tax reform

A Cornell University Professor Law who specializes in financial and monetary law and economics is not impressed by the G-O-P’s $1.5-Trillion federal tax cut bill.  Robert Hockett feels that the Republican majority had a lack-luster year of getting things done and this was its last chance.  He calls the plan, which places a cap on state and local tax deductions - a Civil War Tax Bill.

Utica-area Congressmember Claudia Tenney says it appears the final tax reform bill will include most of the provisions she’s fought for over the past few weeks.  But that doesn’t mean she isn’t continuing to advocate for New York.  Tenney knows the legislation continues to change, and so far she says, it’s been for the better.

"There's a lot on it.  We're not sure what the final bill is going to look like, but it's been improved."     

Karen DeWitt / WXXI News

County leaders across New York are the latest to complain about the tax overhaul plan now being crafted in Congress. They predict higher taxes for many New Yorkers, declining home prices, and slowed economic growth.

Albany County Executive Dan McCoy says the federal tax bill will lead to many middle and upper class New Yorkers paying higher taxes, because of the proposed end to state and local tax deductions. And he says the state’s over $4 billion dollar projected deficit and potential funding cuts isn’t helping either.

“Brace yourselves,” McCoy said.

Karen DeWitt / WXXI News

Governor Cuomo is slamming the tax overhaul plan passed by the House of Representatives, saying it will be “poison” to New York.

A range of groups, from businesses, school leaders and progressive activists in New York also spoke out against the House vote, and the provision to end the state and local tax deduction, saying they will be harmful to state residents.

The governor also criticized the tax plan as a corporate giveaway.

people sit at a long table with microphones
Scott Willis / WAER News

Governor Andrew Cuomo gave a last-minute campaign push in East Syracuse Tuesday, advocating for a property tax freeze plan that could benefit many Upstate home owners.  He’s been touring the state leading up to the April 1 budget deadline, encouraging residents and supporters to pressure state legislators to approve his proposal.

Senators Carl Marcellino, John DeFrancisco, Dave Valesky
Scott Willis / WAER

In a hearing Thursday to discuss ways to reduce and reform the state’s taxes, a theme emerged:  Syracuse-area business owners say the state’s high tax burden and shrinking population make it tempting to do business elsewhere. 

The Pioneer Companies development firm has been based here for four generations, but Chairman Michael Falcone testified he’s had to branch out to ten other states.  He says that gives him a solid basis of comparison: