Cuomo’s big-government agenda strangling N.Y.’s economy

By Tom Reed

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has been complaining that the SALT cap is causing the 1 percent to leave New York State and doubling down on his extreme, big-government agenda which will eventually destroy New York’s middle class.

The governor says New York has a “very fragile economy” because the state relies on a very small number of people for a “vast amount” of our tax dollars and these taxpayers will leave when they cannot write off Albany’s high taxes on their federal tax returns.

In hypocritical fashion, Cuomo has apparently embraced Republican ideology. When you raise taxes on anyone, if able, they will simply relocate to an area with better governance and lower taxes. We’ve seen this in practice – New Yorkers have been leaving our state for years because of our governor’s oppressive economic policies.

This is why I successfully fought to ensure tax reform included a SALT cap that protected the hardworking families we represent and care about fairly. The $10,000 SALT cap protects over 90 percent of people in our district.

Meanwhile, extremists in Albany continue to tax the middle class right out of New York State. They’re giving college financial aid to illegal immigrants, raises to prisoners and a sweetheart deal to the world’s richest man for a headquarters in New York City – all while existing businesses struggle to keep their doors open.

The governor is going to great lengths to protect his wealthy donor base and point fingers at everything but the real culprit. In the process, he’s also missing an opportunity to help families and businesses of all sizes by improving New York’s uncompetitive tax code.

I don’t agree with Cuomo about much, but he is right about one thing. If he does not address the reckless spending and out of control taxes, New York’s $2.6 billion state deficit will continue to balloon. But mark my words, rather than address the root cause of the problem – the out of control spending – the governor and Albany will instead go where the money is and increase taxes on the working middle class New Yorkers.

But there is a simple solution for the governor: Abandon the extreme big government agenda, rein in the out of control spending, and lower taxes across the board for everyone. Even the governor understands this would work, saying, “It’s not a level playing field to begin with. All things being equal, if we do nothing, they’re going to Texas.”

If he were to choose this path, the rich would stay in New York and pay their fair share. The middle class would prosper. The SALT cap would be a nonissue.

As a proud Republican, we support lowering taxes and more freedom for people. I invite all New Yorkers to join us in embracing this common-sense, conservative philosophy so we can grow our state for generations to come.

Rep. Tom Reed, R-Corning, represents New York’s 23rd Congressional District.