Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
December 15, 2008
POLITICS: So Much For New York's Famously Low Taxes

Via Shannon Bell: David Paterson is planning to join the roll of tax hiking Democratic governors with $4 billion in new tax hikes, including consumption taxes and, less objectionably, raising fees for government services, but, to Paterson's credit, not hiking income tax rates. On the spending side, Paterson is proposing some tough cuts - to Medicaid and education - but also expanding other areas of state spending like welfare and health insurance:

The most significant move was a proposed increase to welfare grants for the first time in 18 years, though more money would not be made available until the beginning of 2010. The administration plans to seek a 30 percent increase over three years, with the eventual cost of the increase exceeding $100 million a year.

The basic welfare grant would eventually rise to $387 a month from $291 for a family of three, or $3,492 per year, where it has remained since 1990.

That the administration was pushing the measure foretold how little money was available this year; the increased welfare grants will have little impact on the budget for the coming fiscal year, which ends in March 2010.

The administration also said it would expand a state-financed health insurance program, Family Health Plus, to cover 19- and 20-year-olds who no longer live with their parents. Enrolling in such programs would also be made easier by, among other things, ending requirements for face-to-face interviews.

As the NY Times notes, Paterson will likely come under pressure from Democrats, especially in the Assembly, to add income tax hikes on the same New York taxpayers also being targeted by Democrats at the national and city levels, and to drop the spending cuts.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 1:30 PM | Politics 2008 | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

This flies in the face of the one truism EVERY American knows:
There is such a thing as free lunch.

Posted by: Berto at December 15, 2008 2:55 PM

I really can't figure out the Republican obsession with taxes. Really I can't. Nobody wants to pay more, but I don't see anyone volunteering to cut services enough to cover what comes in. I could name any number of agencies that we could get rig of, but nobody asked me anyway.

But Crank, this anti-tax mantra is getting odd. It's not what got us into this mess , and it's not what will get us out.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at December 15, 2008 2:57 PM

When Bridges to Nowhere are getting funded and Murtha is in a feeding frenzy it is proof positive that the beltway jokers of both stripes have too much money to play with, not too little.

Posted by: dave at December 15, 2008 4:41 PM

Well, if the so-called "rich" keep getting nailed with new taxes, eventually the smart ones will leave NY, killing the revenue stream yet again.

Posted by: Ashburn Alley at December 16, 2008 2:00 AM

I won't pretend to be expert on NY's welfare programs, but isn't this just an adjustment for inflation? The original amount was unchanged for 18 years.

Posted by: MVH at December 16, 2008 6:45 AM

Given the unprecedented nature of the GOP "spend and borrow" program during the Bush years, you are living in a fairly glassy house.

Patterson was not responsible for the current fiscal year budget in NY. The Bush Recession and its ancillary parts are going to impact NY state revenues particularly harshly. Dealing with an imbalanced budget is like a diet; the only effective way is to reduce caloric intake, increase caloric use, or both. Patterson is proposing to raise revenue and cut spending.

Crank, if you GOP'ers are so intent on cutting services, identify the ones to be cut and see how much popular support there is.

As for the rich leaving NY, perhaps they'll join Princess Sarah in Alaska.

Posted by: Magrooder at December 16, 2008 1:05 PM
Site Meter 250wde_2004WeblogAwards_BestSports.jpg