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For Release — March 25, 2009

Business Council says New York's poor business climate will be made worse by more taxes

ALBANY—“Despite a tax burden that is already astronomically high, New York continues to face a huge budget gap. Trying to solve that problem by taxing everything in sight is just repeating the mistakes of the past,” said Kenneth Adams, president & CEO of The Business Council of New York State.

Chief Executive Magazine recently released its national survey of CEOs on the best and worst states in which to do business. New York continued a four-year trend as one of the two worst states in the union for business, besting only California.

“Our survey, year-over-year proves that those states with the worst records continue to practice the same policies that alienate businesses,” said J.P. Donlan, editor-in-chief of the magazine in a release on the survey.

“Putting more than $3 billion in new taxes on electricity, telephone services, insurance products and health care is only going to make New York's position worse,” said Adams.

The Business Council is opposing $651 million in increased taxes on electric rates and telephone services, millions more in new taxes on insurance products, including life, property-casualty and health insurance. Taxes that will drain more than $3 billion from the economy.

“The taxes on electric and telephone bills are regressive. Both residential and business users of these services will be harmed by higher costs,” said Adams.

“New York's domestic life insurance industry is very important to our state's economy and recovery. The taxes on this industry will not only harm their operations in New York they will make this state's companies less competitive when they sell their products in other states,” added Adams.

New York's domestic life insurers maintain headquarters in New York City, Binghamton, Syracuse and Albany. They directly employ more than 30,000 New Yorkers. Damaging this industry puts good New York jobs at risk.

The Business Council is running an e-advocacy campaign in opposition to the tax increases at its website: www.bcnys.org

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