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Government Affairs Albany Update

April 8, 2005

Thruway Toll Hearings

The New York State Thruway Authority continues its public hearings on proposed toll hikes. Hearings have been held in Buffalo, Syracuse and Albany and will conclude on April 11th in Suffern.

Tolls are proposed to increase 25% for cars and 35% for trucks. Many truckers are testifying that due to the combination of the percentage increase and the truck classification system, tolls for many trucks will rise by
60% to 80%, not the proposed 35%. At the Albany hearing this week, Thruway Executive Director Michael Fleischer acknowledged this and assured those concerned that the Board will address this issue before final decisions are made.

Georgia Wins Race; Tenth State to Enact SSFA

On April 6, Governor Perdue signed into law HB191 thereby making Georgia the tenth state to enact Single Sales Factor Apportionment, edging out New York and Arizona - both of whom have dual house passage of SSFA. New York's bill, S.3671, is sitting on Governor Pataki's desk and is due for action by Tuesday, April 12. Arizona's bill, HB2139, is awaiting final approval of the Conference Committee report. Georgia's new law phases SSFA in at 80% receipts, 90% receipts, and 100% receipts over a three-year period.

Chapter Amendment & Signature Likely for Budget General Revenue Bill

As the clock ticks down to the April 12 deadline for the Governor to take action on the dually passed (Senate and Assembly on 3/31/5) Budget general revenue bill (S.3671), the prospects of a three-way agreement on a chapter amendment and gubernatorial approval of S.3671 are growing.
In the Single Sales Factor Apportionment area, the airline and railroad industries (both of which are not covered by the current double weighting apportionment formula in subparagraph 4) are considering whether to remain apportioned under their own unique formulae (contained in subparagraphs 7 and 8, respectively) or to switch to the SSFA formula in S.3671's subparagraph 10. Also, S.3671's SSFA provision for the investment advisory service-related receipts of Article 32 (Bank) taxpayers is being rewritten to apply to all the receipts of an Article 32 subsidiary that is substantially engaged in investment advisory service activities. SSFA is Part A of S.3671; in Part X, the additional mortgage recording tax (Tax Law, Section 253, subdivision 2) which is currently 25 cents per $100 Statewide is being raised a nickel to 30 cents per $100 in the twelve-county Metropolitan Commuter Transportation District effective on the date that S.3671 is signed into law, which is likely to be April 12.