NY Last in Business Climate: Report
Date: April 13, 2012
ALBANY — The Empire State’s economic outlook remains at the bottom of the national heap in a conservative think tank’s annual survey of the states.
“New York ranks dead last for the fourth year in a row by engaging in the same old cronyism and job-killing policies that have pushed countless job creators to look for greener pastures,” the American Legislative Exchange Council declared.
New York, which last escaped the group’s cellar in 2008 — when it ranked 49th — lost points for high taxes, generous welfare benefits, strong unions and a “death” tax in the council’s analysis of 15 factors.
Noting that New Jersey recently added 66,000 private-sector jobs while cutting 21,000 from government, “across the river in New York . . . Gov. Andrew Cuomo just announced a tax increase on the wealthiest taxpayers,” famed supply-side economist Arthur Laffer and his report co-authors wrote.
Cuomo last December engineered an overhaul of state income taxes to keep rates on millionaires well above their scheduled 2012 levels — while modestly reducing rates for those making $40,000 to $300,000 a year.
Cuomo spokesman Matt Wing noted that the governor signed the state’s “first-ever property-tax cap, substantially cut back payroll taxes, and enacted the lowest tax rate for the middle class in 58 years.”