ALBANY, N.Y. - Several groups gathered in Albany Tuesday to protest the tax-free initiative in New York after Governor Cuomo released his bill for the program.
Protestors from student, community and labor groups are urging the state legislature to reject the Governor's Tax Free NY proposal which creates tax-free zones near SUNY campuses. It's an idea Governor Cuomo unveiled back in May to attract more businesses to the region by getting rid of taxes.
The proposal will make SUNY campuses tax-free zones, meaning any new businesses coming in or around a SUNY campus would be exempt from corporate taxes and property taxes for ten years; an idea some New Yorkers are against.
"I think what it does is set up an uneven playing field for existing businesses which now are going to compete," said Ron Deutsch, Executive Director of New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness. "Not to mention subsidize new businesses coming in from out of state that won't have to pay any taxes. Existing businesses are going to have a really hard time competing with these businesses in these zones."
The incentive will also exempt employees working for businesses in these tax free zones from paying state income tax for up to five years.
The state legislature has yet to vote on the governor's proposal.