The newest proposal forced through by Governor Paterson and the New York City Democrat legislators to increase taxes and collect the sales tax on cigarettes sold by Native Americans does little to enhance the State’s ability to collect the tax. It does however, contain tax hikes and several legal loopholes that have the potential to make this proposal very dangerous and a threat to Cayuga and Seneca counties. The proposal has the potential to blow open the door for future State giveaways to the Indian Nations.
I vigorously oppose this new legislation because it gives this Governor and all future governors the authority to negotiate all Indian matters behind closed doors and without public scrutiny. This new law allows everything from casino compacts, land claims, gaming issues and the retail sale of any products, including gasoline, tobacco and luxury items to be negotiated without any scrutiny, authorization or approval of the State Legislature!
There is already a law on the books -- legislation that I authored -- that has been adopted by both the New York State Assembly and Senate -- and signed by Governor Paterson -- giving New York State the power to collect the sales tax!
If the Governor, the New York State Tax Department and the New York City Democrats who control the State Senate and State Assembly are truly serious about collecting the sales tax on Indian sales, they need only to enforce the existing law!