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For Release — March 25, 2014

The Business Council calls for a final state budget that grows
New York jobs and the economy

ALBANY, N.Y. —As the Governor and New York State Legislature enter final budget negotiations, The Business Council of New York State, Inc. is calling for a final state budget that boost jobs and New York's economy.

“Job creation and economic growth are key to building strong communities in New York,” said Heather C. Briccetti, Esq., president and CEO of The Business Council of New York State, Inc. “Continuing to restrain spending, implementing broad-based tax reform and mandate relief need to be a priority for a final state budget.”

The Business Council supports adopting Governor Cuomo's tax package that will lower business tax burdens and produce significant job, income and economic benefits for New York.

A study earlier this year by The Public Policy Institute of New York State, Inc. (PPI), “Analysis of Economic Impacts of New York Corporate Income Tax Reform,” showed that when the tax reforms are fully adopted, major business and employment sectors will grow including construction, trades and business service sectors, manufacturing, and financial services.

Reforming the state's bank tax will eliminate provisions in the law that currently penalize banks for keeping jobs and resources in New York, reforms that already exist for the general business community. New York's share of U.S. employment in the financial sector has fallen since 1990. Banking jobs nation-wide have increased by 200,000 but New York's share of those jobs has declined by 100,000.

Among the other issues of concern to The Business Council in a final state budget:

Paid Family Leave
Reflecting an IDC priority, the Senate budget proposal would require businesses of 25 employees or more to provide up to six weeks of paid time off through the state's disability program would burden businesses, especially smaller ones.

Out-of-Network Mandates
New York's employers consistently rank health care costs as their top cost-of-doing business. It is imperative that the budget does not replace one problem with another by mandating further premium increases. Mandating out-of-network coverage, as currently proposed reduces consumer choice and significantly increases the cost of coverage.

Energy Tax
The proposal to eliminate the 18-a utility surcharge on facilities that utilize significant amounts of energy — schools, manufacturers, hospitals, and municipalities — would provide significant and meaningful relief. Ultimately, this will allow manufacturers and employers to save several thousand per month that could be reinvested in jobs and economic growth.

Campaign Finance Reform
Current campaign finance reform proposals would unfairly restrict business contributions. The Business Council supports a system that treats all contributors equally under the law. Additionally, proposing surcharges on settlements under the state's security fraud law, known as the Martin Act, to generate revenues to support a new public campaign financing fund is a bad idea. Penalties and settlements should never be based on the need to pay for a spending line in the state budget.

Brownfields
The Executive Budget proposed to extend the state's brownfield cleanup program and tax incentives, but with overly restrictive changes. The Business Council supports an extension and targeted reform that will continue to promote the repurposing of old industrial property, particularly in upstate areas.

Additionally, The Business Council supports increased funding for New York's tourism industry as well as educational initiatives for workforce development.

For more on The Business Council of New York State, Inc.'s agenda visit www.bcnys.org or view FIX NY: The Business Council 2014 Legislative & Regulatory Agenda.