NY State Passes $140B Budget Just Before Deadline

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Governor Andrew Cuomo and Albany lawmakers passed a $140 billion budget at the 11th hour on Monday night.
Governor Andrew Cuomo and Albany lawmakers passed a $140 billion budget at the 11th hour on Monday night. Photo Credit: File

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York State lawmakers were able to pass a $140 billion budget that provides tax relief for businesses, homeowners and renters. 

The new budget was passed at approximately 11:15 p.m. on Monday just minutes before the new fiscal year for the state began. It marks the fourth consecutive year lawmakers have passed a budget before the deadline. 

The new budget will provide a credit on property tax that will save homeowners an estimated $1.5 billion over the next three years. 

“This budget builds on the State’s progress over the past three years in order to grow the economy and create new opportunities for New Yorkers and their families,” Cuomo said in a statement. “This budget maintains the fiscal discipline that has characterized the last three years of progress by holding the growth in spending below two percent, while also making broad tax cuts that will help homeowners and businesses thrive. It also contains targeted investments that will transform our schools, ensure safer, cleaner, and fairer communities, and restore the public’s trust in government. This budget contains the framework that will allow us to build a new New York, and I commend the members of the Senate and the Assembly who have joined us to continue that progress.”

The budget also calls for the simplification of business taxes and a reduction in the business tax rate from 7.1 percent to 6.5 percent. 

The 2014-15 spending plan will also provide $1.5 billion over the next five years to help phase in universal, full-day kindergarten in schools over the next five years. 

The budget boasts a 5.3 percent increase in education aid, with 70 percent of the increase going to high needs school districts. 

The new budget also calls for reform on Common Core standards, including the ban of all bubble testing for students in pre-kindergarten through second grade.

The new legislation also guarantees that no student in grades three through eight will have the results of Common Core English or math tests appear on their permanent records. 

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[The new budget will provide a credit on property tax that will save homeowners an estimated $1.5 billion over the next three years. ]

And where is the $1.5 billion dollars going to come from? Are we going to increase the debt, raise taxes someplace else, or cut spending? And if we are cutting spending, what services, exactly, are being eliminated?

It has to be one of those three, and a responsible press would find out which one, instead of buying into the perception that tax cuts are "free money."

The last time this was done was Pataki's STAR program, which has been a disaster. Blew a $500 million dollar hole in the State's budget every year, and taxes still went up. The State made cities give out a Tax Exemption to EVERYBODY, reimbursed the money, but had no plan for replacing the money they reimbursed. Is Cuomo trying to imitate Pataki?

We need to vote them all out and start over again, starting with Mario jr.

The reduction in the corporate tax rate from 7.1% to 6.5% is not effective until 1/1/16. How is this an item being approved in the 2014-2015 budget? This item affects the 2015-2016 budget, which would be adopted at this time next year. Adopting it in a year that it has no relevance to is purely a political gimmick so politicians can say they voted to cut the corporate tax rate. When next year's budget is done there is nothing preventing them from delaying or even cancelling this reduction. Even more absurd is that quite possibly many of the people who would be voting on the 2015-2016 budget are not the same people that are in office today.

Mount Vernon tax payers won't benefit from the tax credit because the board of estimate and city council, rather than staying within the tax cap, gave us a 7.78% increase.