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Statement from Assemblymember Reilly following the passage of the FY 2021-2022 New York State budget

CONTACT: Peter Giunta, 347.621.8031

The following statement is from Assemblymember Michael Reilly (R-Staten Island) on the passage of the state budget for FY 2021-2022…

“As New York continues to deal with implications from the COVID-19 Pandemic, as well as the economic crisis that began long before then, there’s arguably no denying that this was one of the most important budgets in our state’s history.  This was a budget that should have focused on New York’s recovery, above all else, while also taking steps to rein in the out-of-control spending that Albany has become so well known for.  Instead, one-party rule produced a budget that was weighed down by partisan policy and leaves little for taxpayers to celebrate.

As is the case with every budget passed in Albany, these progressive and sometimes radical policies are attached to important budget allocations.  It is a way for the Governor and members of the State Legislature to advance their policies with little to no public knowledge.  With the Governor distracted by a myriad of scandals, this meant that the Democrat-led State Legislature had more than enough leverage to push for the policies they wanted most.  You’d think that, with a budget deficit that peaked at nearly $15 billion last year, there would be little room for new spending this year – but even after a $12.6 billion bailout from the federal government, that’s not the case.  

This budget sets a new record for our state’s history of irresponsible and wasteful spending – at the tune of $212 billion.  While I am glad to see that middle-class tax relief, financial assistance for both renters and landlords, and grants for small businesses were included in this budget, they simply do not go far enough to provide long-term relief.  I was also glad to see an increase in education spending, which I believe will be vitally important as we continue toward a return to full time, in-person instruction for K-12 schools,  as well as funding to train local law enforcement agencies throughout the state to handle the impact that legalized marijuana, will undoubtedly have on our communities.    

These efforts, however, become moot when you consider the $4.5 billion tax increase that was included in this budget, affecting New Yorkers who make more than $1 million annually, many of whom are among our state’s job creators and are also subject to the $1.1 billion increase in corporate taxes that were included in this budget.  If we continue down this path of taxing jobs out of the state, which is evident by New York’s alarming trend of outward migration, then investing in our middle class, public education and even public safety will be pointless.  We need to do better because New Yorkers deserve better.”

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