Legislature Agrees On State Budget

Thomas P. Morahan

March 29, 2006

Senator Thomas P. Morahanannounced that the State Legislature has agreed on the 2006-07 State budget. Morahan, one of the key joint Assembly-Senate Budget Conference chairmen responsible for producing the budget, noted that the document would deliver tax cuts to families, help make New York more economically competitive, and will make important investments in education, health care and other areas that will improve the quality of life for New Yorkers.

"This budget will return more than $4.1 billion to the hardworking, overburdened taxpayers of New York State over the next two years. A highlight of the budget is the Senate’s plan to provide almost $2 billion in direct rebates to property taxpayers, including $72 million for STAR cost of living increases for senior citizens," said Morahan.

The revised budget eliminates the personal income tax marriage penalty, provides a child education tax credit to parents of children in school, and will allow the sales tax on clothing and shoe purchases under $110 to end on April 1st.

School children throughout the State will benefit from a record education aid increase of almost $1.3 billion, including a new statewide school construction aid that will move ahead school building in New York City.

Restorations in health care will ensure that hospitals, nursing homes and emergency rooms stay open and that home care is provided for the sick and disabled.

Some key details:

Property tax relief in the form of direct rebate checks to property taxpayers. Rebate checks will range from $300 to $800, depending on where you live and if you’re a senior citizen.

Elimination of the marriage penalty which will save married couples who take the standard deduction and file jointly;.

Child education tax credit that provides $330 tax credits per child to parents with school-age children, to help pay for education-related expenses.

Teacher Resource and Computer Centers aid increased by $ 20.6 million

Teacher support aid of $ 67.5 million

Aid to BOCES increased by $ 58.1 million

Aid to public libraries increased by almost $ 6 million

Allowing businesses to keep a larger share of sales tax collections,

Expansion of Empire Zone tax credits - $50 million

Open space land acquisition - $ 50 million

Biofuels tax credit - $5 million

Film tax credit to $35 million and extending it to commercial production - $7 million

Extension of brownfields tax credit - $11 million

Farmers’ school property tax credit - $10 million

Volunteer firemen income tax credit - $25 million

Low income housing credit - $4 million

Land conservation tax credit - $1 million

PIT exemption for National Guard members $1 million