Thursday, September 25, 2008

New York is just too expensive

In the past week or so, I have learned of five families that are in the process of moving out of New York State (“NYS”) to a less expensive state. Within the past few months I have spoken with several people who don’t know how they will be able to remain in NYS when they retire.

The cost of living is very high in NYS, and to make matters worse, the tax burden is one of the highest in the nation. I don’t know where all that money goes, but it certainly doesn’t go to good roads and superior schools. The infrastructure is crumbling, and despite ridiculously high taxes, NYS doesn’t have the funds to rebuild! Where is all that tax money going!?!?

I believe it is a moral imperative for NYS (and all other governments) to take a hard look at where every dollar goes. States, counties and cities will have to get back to basics: spend the tax money only on what are the basic and necessary functions of government, and forget the rest. Government doesn’t have to fund the arts, pay for professional sports stadiums, and spend money on programs that aren’t the main job of government while we are being taxed to death, schools are failing, and the infrastructure is in dire need of repair.

As I understand it, NYS receives about 20% of its revenue from the financial industry, and some portion of that source will be going away for some time. Therefore, NYS must make some decisions that will cause special interests to complain loudly. We the electorate must hold our representatives in Albany accountable. Otherwise there will continue to be an intolerable burden on the poor, the middle class (as always) will be squeezed, and businesses will be driven out. A pretty bleak future faces us unless Albany gets its act together now!

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