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For Release — November 13, 2008

Business Council tells Assembly state spending must be reduced

ALBANY— New York is facing an unprecedented budget crisis and must lower its spending to get through it, said The Business Council of New York State in testimony to the Assembly Ways and Means Committee.

“The Business Council typically advocates for an improved business climate, lower taxes, lower regulatory burdens, and reductions in other state-influenced costs of doing business. At this point in time, however, we see only one public policy priority, controlling state spending,” said Kenneth Adams, president & CEO of The Business Council.

“New York needs to make fundamental changes in governmental structure, and governmental programs, in order to achieve long term budget stability, and long term improvements in the state's economic climate and economic performance,” added Adams.

The council called on the legislature to act with urgency in dealing with this crisis by reducing spending.

While supporting most of Gov. David Paterson's spending reductions, the council voiced opposition to the proposed increase in taxes on insurers that could increase health care costs for employers.

“We are concerned about any new taxes and fees, we especially question the policy objective of taxing private health insurance, at a time when the state is struggling to find money to pay for government provided or subsidized health coverage,” said Adams.

The full testimony is available at: www.bcnys.org/inside/budget/2008/nys-budget-crisis-testimony.htm

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