“Once again, instead of doing the jobs they were elected to do, the Assembly and Senate Majorities opted to pass their 12th emergency budget extender. Today’s extender contained a provision that would move forward the state’s collection of taxes on cigarettes sold on Native American lands to non-Native American Indians, a step I have been pushing New York to take for years. However, the legislation did not go far enough. It failed to include motor fuel and other products sold on Native American lands to non-Native American Indians. Another concern was the fact that the measure would not take effect until September 1, which represents another delay that we cannot afford. Make no mistake, New York needs to enforce the law, collect all of these taxes and level the playing field – and it needs to do so now, not in September.
However, this 12th budget extender also contained nearly $300 million in increased taxes and continues a piecemeal approach to budgeting that is not working for taxpayers. Both of these measures ‘poisoned the well’ making it impossible for me to support the extender. New Yorkers already pay some of the nation’s highest taxes – increasing them even further won’t solve our fiscal problems. Nor will allowing New York’s broken budget process to continue unraveling accomplish any goal.
New York has been without a complete spending plan for 82 days, and the fact we are here in June, on the final scheduled day of Assembly session, voting on still another extender shows how serious the disconnect is between Albany and the real world.
I will continue leading the fight to collect all of the sales taxes from cigarettes, motor fuel and other products sold on Native American lands to non-Native American Indians. This measure was too important for the Majorities to try to play politics with. It should have been advanced as a stand-alone piece of legislation, just as we should be passing a fiscally responsible spending plan in its entirety as opposed to more piecemeal extenders.”