State Senator Lee Zeldin Joins Governor Cuomo for Bill Signing of Law Repealing Mta Payroll Tax for Over 700k Taxpayers

West Hempstead, N.Y. – State Senator Lee M. Zeldn (R, C, I- Shirley) joined his legislative colleagues and Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today as the Governor signed into law a new measure to eliminate the MTA Payroll Tax for approximately 80 percent of all employers currently paying the tax.

Last week, the Legislature passed a bill repealing the MTA Payroll Tax for 78.2 percent of all employers (over 700,000 taxpayers). In addition, thousands more will see a reduction. In addition to the 290,000 employers who will have their tax eliminated, 414,000 self-employed taxpayers will also see the MTA Tax repealed. All elementary and secondary schools, both public and private, will now also be completely exempt from the payroll tax.

“I want to thank Governor Cuomo, my legislative colleagues and all of the grassroots advocates for their partnership to help begin repealing the job-killing MTA Payroll Tax,” said Senator Zeldin. “This tax has been damaging our economy and restricting the growth of quality jobs in New York. Repealing it for all small businesses and schools, and reducing the rate for many others, spurs real economic development, and helps put New York State back on the path towards prosperity.”

Senator Zeldin sponsored a bill, S.5596-A/A.8193-A, to repeal the MTA Payroll Tax during the 2011 Regular Session. This bill originally passed the State Senate on June 15, 2011 with a bi-partisan vote, 40-22. The bill was introduced in the Assembly by Assemblyman George Latimer (D- Rye). Twenty-one other Assembly Members had signed on as co-sponsors, including Dean Murray (R, C- East Patchogue), Al Graf (R, C- Holbrook), Dan Losquadro (R, C- Shoreham), and Fred Thiele (I- Sage Harbor).

Many organizations also independently endorsed Senator Zeldin’s bill, including: The New York State School Boards Association, The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of New York, Nassau-Suffolk Hospital Council, Tax Relief Now, New York State Catholic Conference, Empire State Chapter of the Associated Builders and Contractors, National Federation of Independent Businesses, Business Council of New York State, Inc., Conservative Party of New York State, Long Island Business News, New York Farm Bureau, GrowPAC, restructuring expert Harry Wilson, Long Island Cares, Inc., Long Island Business Council, Hauppauge Industrial Association, and several Chambers of Commerce.

Kevin Law, President & CEO of the Long Island Association said, “I applaud Governor Cuomo, Senator Majority Leader Skelos, and Senator Zeldin for leading the charge to begin rolling back the MTA payroll tax. This tax cut will boost small businesses, create jobs and stimulate the economy.”

“I applaud Senator Zeldin, Majority Leader Skelos and their colleagues in the Senate Majority for their steadfast commitment to reducing this onerous burden that had been placed at the door step for small business owners throughout the MTA region,” said Mike Durant, State Director of the National Federation of Independent Business. “The MTA payroll tax has been a signature piece of legislation that illustrated the disconnect between Albany politics and the needs of small business. The enacted reforms will eliminate most, if not all, of this tax burden on small businesses and allow them to create necessary jobs and help lead New York to a brighter economic future.”

Heather Briccetti, acting-president and CEO of The Business Council of New York State, Inc. said, “The Business Council commends Governor Cuomo, Senate Majority Leader Skelos and Speaker Silver for coming to a bipartisan agreement that reduces payroll taxes in the MTA region, encourages job creation and economic development. We praise Senator Lee Zeldin for his steadfast commitment to seeing that the burden of the MTA payroll tax be removed from small businesses and schools that are the backbone of our economy.”

 “Our efforts must not stop, even with a $320 million elimination of the MTA Payroll Tax. Together, we must continue our work in identifying needed reforms for the MTA to lower its costs without fare increases or service cuts. We must always strive to do more to improve the business climate here on Long Island,” concluded Zeldin.