Griffo Calls for Fewer Taxes, Fees; More Spending Cuts
(Albany) - Senator Joseph A. Griffo (R-IP-C, Rome) today said that the small steps forward made by Governor David Paterson’s proposed state budget are not bold enough to revive New York State’s economy and create a climate for job growth.
"As a leading advocate of spending restraint, I commend the governor for holding down spending, because this is a job that has to be done,” Griffo said. “I have supported a spending cap, and this budget falls well within that cap. However, these are not routine times. These are extraordinary times that call for even greater efforts and creativity. I want to see this governor and this Legislature work collaboratively in the next few weeks to bring the spending increase down. When we have done that, then we can say we have made a giant stride at meeting the needs of New Yorkers today and creating a leaner, more efficiency government that New Yorkers can afford tomorrow.”
Griffo said that the roughly $1 billion in new taxes and fees is also a part of Paterson’s budget that requires a thorough review. “I appreciate the fact that he said that on the issue of non-Indians buying cigarettes at Indian-owned stores, he is willing to revisit his position and heed those of us who have said New York cannot afford to continue to allow this revenue to go uncollected, which flies in the face of state law,” Griffo said. “I am very mindful of the needs of New York businesses and families that are already straining under the burdens of making ends meet. We can’t ask people trying to do the impossible to keep paying more taxes and more fees. In good conscience, we cannot add $1 billion to their burden and we should not use tax policy to regulate social behavior.
Griffo said the budget reviews will find areas of waste, fraud, abuse and inefficiency that can help reduce any need for tax and fee increases.
“This budget is a starting point for the job we need to do in the weeks ahead,””Griffo said. “My goal is to take these small steps forward made by the Governor and build upon them to create a final budget that will provide New Yorkers with the spending relief and tax relief they deserve; and a better plan for job retention and creation. Each step along the way must be done in public, in the light of day, and with free and open debate that puts partisan interests second and the needs of New Yorkers first.”