Last week, the Senate GOP Conference issued its “Tax Policy Review & Reform Initiative,” which is based on hearings held the Senate Finance Committee and the Senate Investigations and Government Operations committees held around the state in September and October.


The Senate Republicans propose to:


  • accelerate the 18-A Utility Tax Surcharge reduction to phase it  out in two years instead of four (it would be fully eliminated in SFY 2016-17);
  • cap state spending at 2% annually, and place surplus monies in a Tax Freedom Fund, to be used to pay for tax reductions;
  • eliminate MTA payroll tax on public entities;
  • require a 2/3 majority vote of the Legislature to increase taxes;
  • make all retirement income tax-free (to encourage retired New Yorkers to stay here);
  • align the state’s estate tax with the federal estate tax;
  • reduce corporate tax rates by 15% if new State revenues exceed $500 million;
  • eliminate the Corporate Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT);
  • make the Brownfield Tax Credit permanent; and
  • make the state’s real property tax cap permanent.


The Senate GOP has incorporated a number of recommendations from Unshackle Upstate’s New ERA for Upstate plan into their report. We look forward to working with the Senate to enact these tax relief and reform measures into law in 2014.