BY ALEX MERCED
Andrew Cuomo has been Governor now for two terms, and I do not feel things have changed for the better. In my own experience I feel a dangerous narrowing of the gap between what I take home after taxes versus the cost of living. So even though my pay has increased, the amount I take home has decreased and the amount of it spent on housing, food, and health insurance has crowded my ability to do much of anything else.
The bottom line? You can come up with all the policy gimmicks in the world, but if people take home less and have to spend more, their quality of life deteriorates. Below I’ll point to 10 trends and realities in New York that are feeding the difficulty of living in New York that can be turned around with the right leadership. This is why I encourage people to learn about an alternative vision for New York by going to LarrySharpe.com and learning about Larry Sharpe, a candidate who has been endorsed by some of the most celebrated Governors in the country’s history, such as New Mexico’s Gary Johnson and Massachusetts’ Bill Weld.
- Governor Andrew Cuomo has waged a war on local governments, blaming them for high property taxes, which is often times still not enough to cover the requirements Washington, D.C. and Albany place on them with unfunded mandates (requirements from other governments that those governments offer no assistance to comply with).
- Not only does every city and county get burdened with mandates they are struggling to pay for, but their ability to raise money is limited through a tax cap making them overly dependent on money from Albany to make the difference, giving Albany more influence on local governments than the local community.
- New York is among the top state with the highest tax burden. This includes local sales tax, excise/sin taxes, property taxes, and school taxes across the state.
- In 2017, New York was ranked the 2nd most expensive state to live in. Having a high tax burden which reduces your take home pay, along with a high cost of living is not a winning combination.
- New York cigarette taxes are so high that it’s become the state with the most cigarette smuggling in the country. Taxes are so high people are becoming criminals to enjoy a pack of cigarettes.
- Despite ranking 1st place for overall healthcare costs, New York isn’t even in the top 5 healthiest states in the country.
- New York ranks 19th in education outcomes, but ranks first in spending per student.
- When you spend more on healthcare and education but get less back and add on increasing taxes and costs of living, it’s no wonder New York is having a severe emigration problem of taxpayers leaving the state.
- Instead of creating a business-friendly environment of simple taxes and regulations, Cuomo has kept the complex web of taxes and regulation and has failed to attract new business with his policy gimmick, StartUP NY.
- Deindustrialization and changes in the retail industry have hit upstate New York hard, and this will only turn around with a Governor who can facilitate New Industries to be discovered in New York by New Yorkers with a more business-friendly environment.
As you can see, another four years of Andrew Cuomo and Albany as usual isn’t affordable to New Yorkers. We need to change course and Larry Sharpe is the strong empowering leader to do it.
Alex Merced is a Member of the Libertarian Party of New York. He was the 2013 candidate for NYC Public Advocate, 2016 Candidate for U.S. Senate, and 2017 Candidate for NYC Comptroller. He also is the host of the AlexMercedCast podcast and a corporate trainer in the Financial Industry.