March 26, 2012
Letter to Governor Cuomo Regarding 2012-2013 Budget Proposals
March 26, 2012
Dear Governor Cuomo, Majority Leader Skelos and Speaker Silver:
I am writing to share the support of the Long Island Association (LIA) for timely passage of a 2012-2013 budget that controls spending and adopts several key economic development priorities. The final budget should continue advancing pro-economic development and pro-jobs agenda for New York State. In particular, the LIA supports Governor Cuomo''s New York Works Infrastructure Fund, Medicaid relief for local governments, and many of the proposals in the Senate Majority''s New Jobs-NY Job Creation Plan. In this struggling economy, the implementation of these measures is critical to creating jobs, cutting taxes, and controlling state spending.
New York State and Long Island would benefit greatly from approval of the New York Works Infrastructure Fund. This multi-billion initiative will leverage state, federal and private resources to rehabilitate the State''s critical infrastructure assets and create thousands of jobs by accelerating capital projects. The program will build and improve bridges, highways, parks, waste water treatment facilities, renewable and efficient energy systems, flood control structures, dams, SUNY facilities and other critical infrastructure components. The LIA looks forward to working with you and Senator Fuschillo, Chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, to ensure the program''s success and that Long Island''s vital projects are fairly funded.
The Governor''s proposed budget also includes Medicaid relief for our cash-strapped local municipalities. Medicaid growth is a major cost driver for counties and reducing their burden by having the State assume Medicaid cost increases would aid taxpayers and businesses and accelerate the speed of our economic recovery. In 2006, the State capped the amount of Medicaid cost growth that counties have to pay. Currently, the cap is 3% of growth; all growth over 3% is paid by the State. To provide significant fiscal relief to counties and to New York City, the LIA agrees with the plan to phase in a 100% takeover of the costs of Medicaid growth. The takeover by the State of a greater share of local Medicaid expenses is projected to save counties and New York City $1.2 billion over the next five years.
Finally, the LIA has a history of supporting many elements of the Senate Majority''s plan, including tax cuts for small business, repeal of the 18-A utility assessment, a state spending cap, and regulatory reform. Specifically, both the New York State and Long Island economies would greatly benefit from the following:
- Reducing the corporate tax rate for small businesses;
- A 10% tax credit for small businesses that pay under the personal income tax;
- Expediting the repeal of the 18-A utility assessment from 2014 to 2013;
- Tax credits for job creation;
- A 2% state spending cap;
- A moratorium on new taxes and fees;
- And regulatory reforms to cut red tape for businesses (e.g. repealing the Wage Theft Prevention Act).
The aforementioned budget proposals would spur economic growth while strengthening the health of the private sector. We look forward to working with you and supporting a budget that includes meaningful relief to the business community and continues to support economic development in our State. If I can be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to call me at (631) 493-3001. Thank you.
Kevin S. Law
President & CEO
Long Island Association
cc: Long Island State Senate and State Assembly Delegation