What's New

Zack Hutchins
Director of Communications

April 3, 2000

Citizens Budget Commission urges GRT reduction, spending restraint

The Citizens Budget Commission, a respected civic organization based in New York City, issued a report urging Governor Pataki and the Legislature to reduce the gross receipts tax and slow the growth in state spending.

"An exceptionally high tax on utility receipts is economically harmful because it raises energy costs for businesses and thereby puts firms in New York at a competitive disadvantage," said the CBC report, Recommendations for the New York State Budget For Fiscal Year 2001.

"In addition to its negative impact on competitiveness, the tax is regressive. Utility costs fall disproportionately on low-income households."

Senate Majority Leader Bruno, Governor Pataki, Assembly Minority Leader Faso and Assemblyman Schimminger have all proposed legislation to eliminate the GRT -- The Business Council's top tax priority this year.

On another issue, the report said: "A noteworthy effort was made to constrain State spending and reduce the State's workforce in the fiscal years from 1995 through 1997." However, it said, "since fiscal year 1998 expenditures have been growing at a rate well in excess of inflation and the number of State employees has risen." It called proposals for major spending increases this year "troubling" because they "cannot be sustained with recurring revenues."

CBC also called on the state's leaders to:

The report is available through the CBC website, http://www.cbcny.org.