Area assemblymembers on $212b budget agreement

Stephanie Duprey
Updated: April 07, 2021 04:46 AM
Created: April 06, 2021 10:17 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the leaders of the State Assembly came to an agreement Tuesday on how to spend billions of dollars.

If approved, it will be allocated to schools, rent relief, child care, legalization of mobile sports betting, and implementing nursing home reforms.

While there's an agreement, lawmakers still need to approve the $212 billion spending budget.

We spoke with some of the state’s local Democratic and Republican Assemblymembers. While they agreed on some aspects of this budget, they didn't see eye to eye when it comes to your taxes.

In this budget, which is the highest in the state’s history, the highest-earning New Yorkers making $1 million or more will have to pay some steep income tax rates.

"It’s not about getting that 1% back from them at the risk of losing the 12% they're already paying; and if they choose to follow middle-class families out of New York State, how are we going to make up the difference in that lost tax revenue?” Rep. Josh Jensen (R, 134) said. 

The wealth tax is considered a full win for the Democratic Party, which says that your state taxes will not shoot up from this budget, but agree that the wealthy need to pay their share.

"It’s understanding a fairer tax system and understanding that the wealthy haven't really been paying their fair share. They did fine during the pandemic so it’s time to ask them to invest back into our families and the rest of New York,” Rep. Sarah Clark (D, 136) said. 

It may become a fairer tax system, but News10NBC asked our local representatives how this affects the tax bill for the middle class and they say, they can’t quite answer yet until specifics come out.

"Stephanie, this is how crazy this process is, and we haven't seen bill language on the revenue bill so we don't know how we're paying for the $212 billion budget which is the highest in the state’s history,” Jensen added.

The budget details $29.5 billion in aid to schools, which seems to be the only common ground in this budget proposal.

"This has been an ongoing fight I think since the alliance for quality education sued 10 or 12 years ago so that's a long fight we're seeing come to an end and be a win for our students,” Clark added.

The budget also stipulates that funds could be withheld from any police department that doesn't have a reform plan. In that case, a monitor may be appointed.

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