We have one question for our state lawmakers who still want to impose record tax hikes even after the feds rode to New York’s rescue with $12.7 billion in direct aid for the government in Albany and tens of billions more for entities both public and private: Are you crazy?
As Sen. Chuck Schumer noted, when boasting in writing about bringing home the bacon in the American Rescue Plan, the funding is “solving the state’s budget woes.”
And yet state Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie still want to go ahead with a whopping $7 billion in tax hikes on the wealthy that will encourage more job creators to leave for the sunnier climes of North Carolina, Florida and so forth. Joining them will be even more people of average means who’ll find more opportunity to the south and west than here. That’s why Florida recently passed New York in population and why we keep losing congressional seats after every Census. And yet, driven by ideology, jealously and the lust for power, the ability to control more of society by controlling more of the economy, some never learn. But as Queens Chamber of Commerce President Tom Grech told the New York Post, “You don’t tax your way into prosperity. We need people to make bold investments in New York City. Tax hikes are going to discourage investment.”
The Legislature wants to raise spending an insane 18 percent, from $177 billion this year to $208.3 billion. The tax hikes it plans include higher levies on income, capital gains, second homes and corporations. Those, of course, would hurt middle- and lower-income people by driving up the cost of goods, driving down home values as people leave, reducing job opportunities and slowing overall economic growth.
“This is what happened to New York during the 1970s, when we lost half our Fortune 500 companies, and it took 30 years to recover,” says a letter signed by more than 250 business leaders opposing the plan. They warned that higher taxes and spending would make it far harder for the economy to recover from the devastating impact of Covid-19.
Yes, some people are incredibly wealthy, and it’s frustrating that you’re not. But the top 1 percent in New York already pay more than 40 percent of all income taxes. With Zoom, it’s even easier for both folks and firms to flee than it was in the ’70s. And rather than Ford telling New York to drop dead, we have Biden telling us to come and get it. We don’t need tax hikes. We need a free people spending freely.