Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R-C-I, Elma) joined members of the Senate Republican Conference today in advancing its “Real Solutions” budget, a fiscally responsible spending plan that will reduce taxes, boost the economy, and create new and unprecedented opportunities for small businesses, workers, students and middle-class families.
Long-known for protecting hardworking taxpayers and taking meaningful action to promote affordability for middle-class residents who choose to live and work in New York, Senate Republicans unveiled their budget plan hours before Governor Andrew Cuomo was scheduled to deliver his Executive Budget proposal in Albany.
“Our budget plan focuses on priorities important to hardworking New Yorkers, reducing taxes, creating jobs, enhancing security and requiring the state lives within its means,” Senator Gallivan said. “We also takes steps to ensure that taxpayers are treated fairly and that education and infrastructure funding is distributed equitably.”
The Senate Republican budget plan focuses on three basic principles:
* Balancing the budget without any new taxes or fees AND providing real and significant relief to hardworking taxpayers.
* Fixing the state’s affordability crisis to give middle-class taxpayers a fighting chance to succeed and get ahead.
* Revitalizing New York’s economy so residents can find a good-paying job, take advantage of new and better opportunities and raise their families here.
Specific elements include:
- Forcefully rejecting any new taxes or fees.
- Fighting to impose a state spending cap. This is more critical than ever if we are to prevent the Senate Democrats from going on another reckless spending binge.
- Fighting to make the property tax cap permanent. This has been a core position of our conference for years now, and we applaud the fact that more and more Democrats are now following our lead on this important issue.
- Fighting to CUT property taxes, not simply control them. We can do that through a phased-in, fiscally responsible Medicaid takeover and provide dollar-for-dollar savings in the form of property tax relief.
- Delivering this year’s property tax relief checks, and preventing the Senate Democrats from allowing the program to expire next year.
- Delivering a $770 million middle class income tax cut this year. We would achieve this goal by accelerating the phase-in of our historic Middle Class Income Tax Cut. (This would include the planned $400 million in increased income tax savings that are already scheduled to take effect this year, combined with roughly $370 million in new savings by accelerating next year’s scheduled cut.) Rather than letting politicians in Albany spend this money, we want to return it to taxpayers as quickly as possible.
- We will continue leading the fight to protect New Yorkers against misguided federal tax policies that hurt our taxpayers.
- If New York State legalizes marijuana, we will propose that all tax revenues from marijuana sales go to tax relief – not to fuel more spending.
- In addition to our Medicaid takeover / mandate relief plan, we will reject all unfunded mandates. Because these mandates are simply hidden taxes that hurt school districts, local governments and property taxpayers, we will also push for the adoption of a Constitutional Amendment to ban unfunded mandates entirely.
- We will push for a 2/3 supermajority vote requirement to help prevent tax any future tax increases.
• We will fight to enact a comprehensive economic development strategy to stop the exodus of jobs and people from New York State. In his budget proposal, the Governor should be advancing the equivalent of the historic “Marshall Plan” to address what is clearly an economic emergency in certain areas of the state.
• We must deliver broadband to every region of the state.
• We call upon the Governor to include comprehensive tax cuts for small businesses in his budget proposal, including a major $495 million income tax exemption for Small Businesses & Farmers (S2120) as well as a STAR program for Small Businesses; $275 million in savings (S1116);
• We will fight to cut energy taxes, including eliminating the 18-A Regulatory Assessment (This $90 million tax cut builds upon our successful elimination of the Senate Democrat's 18-A surcharge.);
• We will fight to reject tipped wage proposals that would hurt thousands of hardworking New Yorkers and small business owners, and will work to minimize the potentially negative impact of minimum wage increases on certain employers. (S6793 and S4508).
• We will call upon the Governor to address the need for comprehensive regulatory relief for small businesses across the state.
FAIR, REGIONALLY BALANCED SCHOOL AID:
• We will demand that every region of the state be treated fairly and equitably, and that every district receives its fair share of state school aid. This is critical for our local schools, our children, and our overburdened property taxpayers.
• We will also continue fighting to protect and enhance local control and parental involvement, and against the over-testing of our children.
REAL ETHICS REFORM:
• We will continue fighting for increased transparency for economic development projects, including a "Database of Deals." This will combat corruption and better ensure that billions in tax dollars are not being wasted.
• We will push to ban the Governor's Office from taking campaign contributions from those seeking state contracts.
REVITALIZING OUR INFRASTRUCTURE:
• We will demand a fair share of funding for Upstate and Long Island roads and bridges. At a time when the Governor's sole focus appears to be on the MTA and headline-grabbing mega-projects, we need a comprehensive plan to address our crumbling infrastructure needs in Upstate New York and on Long Island.
• We will reject congestion pricing schemes that will hurt millions of everyday commuters, families and small businesses.
MAKING COLLEGE MORE AFFORDABLE:
• Rather than giving illegal immigrants free college tuition with the so-called “dream act,” we will fight to target more tuition assistance to hardworking, middle class families.
SAFEGUARDING OUR HEALTHCARE:
• Before even considering action on any “single-payer” scheme, we will call for a full, comprehensive study to be conducted on the issue. The study will examine the potential impact to taxpayers, local hospitals and nursing homes, and the overall quality of care from any “single-payer” plan.
• If the Reproductive Health Act is included in the Governor’s budget, we will insist on a provision that helps protect women's health by banning non-doctors from performing abortions.
ENSURING SAFETY & SECURITY:
• We will continue leading the fight to combat sexual offenses against women, children and vulnerable New Yorkers.
• We will build upon the work of our highly effective and productive Senate Task Force on Heroin & Opioid Addiction.
• We will lead the fight against any proposals that will make New York State more vulnerable to terrorism; and
• We will continue our fight to enhance school safety in every community across our state.