This afternoon, Governor Cuomo gave his annual State-of-the-State Address, which is a vision, or a road map, of what the Governor would like to see happen in New York State in 2012.
The Governor’s speech is the official kickoff to the 2012 Session. We must continue to work together and build on the momentum that we have achieved in the past year. In 2011, we cut State spending and closed a $10 Billion deficit without raising taxes and fees. We enacted a property tax cap, lowered income tax rates and reduced taxes for upstate manufacturers. For 2012, we will continue with the goal for an on-time, fiscally responsible State budget. We plan to do this by cutting spending again and avoiding any additional taxes or fees.
We must pass real mandate relief to protect property taxpayers and ensure that local governments and school districts stay under the tax cap. I have already sponsored legislation calling for the eventual takeover of the entire Medicaid program by the State to help local municipalities give relief for property taxes.
We must continue working to make New York a more business-friendly State because long-term job growth is a major solution to our budget problems, both on the State level and the local level. We need to make sure New York State is once again the "Empire" State.