Senate Republican report points to need for simpler tax code, reductions to spur growth

Betty Little

November 20, 2013

In advance of the
2014 Legislative Session set to begin in January, State Senator Betty Little
and her Republican colleagues today announced a report outlining numerous
proposals to simplify New York’s tax code and reduce taxes.


The report was developed based on
testimony collected through a series of statewide hearings this fall.


“Helping small businesses by
simplifying the tax code and providing broad-based tax relief is what’s needed
to spur our economy in the North Country,” said Senator Betty Little.  “Everyone agrees that our economy needs
help.  The most effective way to do that
is by helping those that generate revenue and create jobs.”


Highlights of the recommendations
made in the preliminary Senate report include, among other things:  enact a permanent two-percent cap on state
spending growth and dedicate every dollar of surplus savings to tax reduction;
create an optional simple personal income tax calculation; eliminate the
Corporate Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT); and reduce property taxes.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />


The plan also proposes to eliminate
unfair tax treatment by making all retirement income tax-free, thus encouraging
seniors to remain in New York.  Currently
only Federal, State, and local pension income is completely tax-free.  The Senate Republican proposal would amend
New York’s Estate Tax by conforming it with the Federal Job Creation Act and
the American Taxpayer Relief Act to protect family farms and small businesses
and eliminate the incentive to transfer wealth from New York to other states.


The report
also highlights the need to review New York’s current, piecemeal-style approach
to tax relief – which involves providing tax credits to specific industries –
in favor of a simplified system that produces a lower tax structure for all


Little has proposed her own "circuit-breaker" tax relief proposal to
direct property tax relief to those based on income and financial need.