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Bloomberg Continues To Push For NY Commuter Tax

by Leroy Baker, Tax-News.com, New York

30 January 2003


New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg on Tuesday unveiled a $44 billion budget which relies upon a proposed $1 billion commuter tax to help close the city's deficit, despite the fact that New York State Governor, George Pataki has repeatedly stated his opposition to such a levy.

According to an Associated Press report, there appear to be communication failures all round, as Mr Bloomberg's spending plans also include $600 million in savings from New York's municipal employers via measures such as making employees pay for their prescription drugs - a proposal which has been flatly rejected by union leaders.

Although many of the measures require the approval of state legislators in order to pass, the NY Mayor appears confident that he will be able to persuade Gov. Pataki of the necessity of the majority of them, including the commuter tax:

'Those people take advantage of the protection our police department provides, of the safety our fire department provides, they throw out trash that our sanitation picks up, and when you say it's not fair, it's not fair to get a service and not pay your fair share of it.'

However, speaking in December, the State Governor argued that: 'Putting a new tax on people who would come to work here is not a way to attract jobs, it is not a way to attract investment.'

Spokeswoman for Gov. Pataki, Lisa Dewald Stoll reiterated this on Tuesday, announcing that:

'The Governor made clear that given the fragile nature of the economy, he's going to look to other ways to help the city.'


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