“I commend Governor Paterson for unveiling his 2009-10 Executive Budget today, much sooner than is required. It is important that we take advantage of this head start in the budget process during these tough economic times. We must do everything possible to get New York State back on track, going through each component of the budget and ensuring that we protect the families and small businesses of our communities while cutting useless spending.
Unfortunately, the Governor’s proposal currently would impose new taxes on middle-class families and small business, totaling almost $4 billion. I do not believe that we can tax ourselves out of this situation. New York State did not run up a $15 billion budget deficit because our taxes are too low, it happened because many of the folks in Albany are simply addicted to taxing, spending and borrowing. We must realize that taxing our citizens will not stimulate our economy – it will simply place further burdens on our families and businesses, thus stifling economic growth.
Those of us in Western New York and, most importantly, right here in Monroe County, are hurting the most; we have seen businesses close and people lose their jobs. During this fiscal crisis, families and businesses in our communities and across New York have learned to cut back and budget more efficiently. It is time for New York State government to do the same. We must exercise fiscal restraint, cutting useless spending and unnecessary programs in order to prevent raising taxes on families already hampered by the difficult economy.
We need to invest in our economy, reduce the size, cost and reach of government and refuse any tax increases. I am willing to do whatever it takes to accomplish these goals and work to make New York State great again.”