Ronkonkoma, NY- New York State Senator Lee Zeldin (R, C, I- Shirley) updated a crowd of over 100 supporters, business owners, and members of the community on the status of his fight to repeal the MTA Payroll Tax.
The MTA Payroll Tax is a tax which was placed on every business, school, local government, nonprofit and hospital in Suffolk County, costing Suffolk County Taxpayers more than $163,636,074 since its inception 2009.
“Throughout my first 100 days in office, I have been working very hard to deliver on my campaign pledges and principles that sent me to Albany, and I will continue to do so,” said Senator Zeldin.
Senator Zeldin has already delivered on a two year moratorium for the Saltwater Fishing License and Fee, as well as other efforts, which include an on-time budget, that cuts taxes, cuts spending, and closes a $10 billion budget deficit.
“My constituents have my commitment that throughout the remainder of this first term in office, I will not rest on this issue until the MTA Tax is repealed for the residents of the Third Senatorial District,” continued Zeldin, who will be finalizing and introducing legislation to repeal the MTA Tax this legislative session.
On March 15, 2011, the State Senate approved a thorough top-down forensic audit and a repeal of the MTA Tax for public and non-public schools as part of its one house budget resolution. Both of these items did not make it into the final budget agreement with the Assembly and Governor.
In addition to the repeal of the MTA Payroll Tax, the MTA needs to implement organizational reforms and operational cost savings. Some of these examples are:
- Public-private partnerships;
- Real estate consolidations which are now being pursued;
- Cashless tolls which is a change now underway;
- Thorough top-down forensic audit;
- Administrative and management level staffing efficiencies;
- Reduced overtime expenses;
- Reduced reliance on outside litigation costs;
“Through the examination of revenues and efficiencies, no matter how larger or how small, we must find a balance that will allow us to get this tax repealed responsibly,” continued Senator Zeldin.
“I have been speaking to as many people as possible in Albany to get questions answered and solutions identified. I have been working the halls of the Capitol to bring a broad coalition together to fight for its repeal, ” said Senator Zeldin.
On May 5th, the Senate Investigations and Government Operations Committee will be conducting a hearing on the MTA. The Committee is Chaired by Long Island State Senator Carl Marcellino. Senator Zeldin, a member of the Investigation and Government Operations Committee, will be participating in this important and much anticipated hearing.
Senator Zeldin has also kicked off a petition drive. You can get a copy of the petition to circulate from his office or online at: http://www.nysenate.gov/webform/dump-mta-tax
“I need your support,” Zeldin’s remarks included. “The MTA Payroll Tax will not be repealed without your full assistance. The need to repeal the MTA Payroll Tax can be easily communicated in a sound bite. The actual repeal of this tax will only come from a broader coalition of louder advocates with bold ideas to fix our mass transit system.”