Statement by Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos
New Yorkers are ready to move past Election Day. They want us to govern and focus on their priorities. According to a Siena College poll, the top priorities of New Yorkers are creating jobs, reducing state spending and taxes, and balancing the budget. Senate Republicans are ready to get to work and get results on these issues.
This year Senate Republicans proposed a job creation plan that would provide a tax credit, which is similar to one enacted by the federal government, that would create thousands of jobs at no cost to the State, and help get people off unemployment.
However, Senate Democrats rejected our jobs plan. Instead, they gutted the state’s economic development programs and raised taxes on businesses by billions of dollars, driving more businesses and jobs out of the state and creating a budget deficit.
The latest fiscal report from the Comptroller confirms what Senate Republicans said during budget debate, that the budget is out of balance and will drive the state into an even deeper financial hole. The Governor and Comptroller have said the budget deficit could be between $315 million and $1 billion.
At the Quick Start budget meeting yesterday, Senate Republicans made it clear that New York has a spending problem, not a revenue problem. We pointed out that state tax revenues are increasing at 6.7 percent, as a result of the tax increases passed by Legislative Democrats, but state spending is rising at an unsustainable rate of 16.6 percent. If this over-spending is allowed to continue, the budget gap could grow to more than $9 billion.
We simply have to reverse the course Senate Democrats have set over the past two years. We must create jobs, not drive them away, we must reduce spending and we have to reduce taxes. Senate Republicans are looking forward to working with Governor-elect Cuomo to achieve these goals.