Last Friday, State Senate Co-Leader Jeff Klein unveiled the “Affordable NY” plan, which he says is “aimed at making New York affordable for working families.”
Senator Klein is the leader of a group of four Democrats who make up the Independent Democratic Conference (IDC). By joining with the 30-member Senate Republican Conference, they have become part of the Senate’s Majority Coalition.
The Affordable NY plan proposes:
– a $750 million state investment in middle class housing over the next five years;
– six weeks of paid family leave;
– full funding of day care subsidies;
– a $300 utility relief check for seniors;
– a 10-year tax credit for college grads who stay in New York State; and
– a tax credit for donations made to local public or private schools.
It is definitely an ambitious plan, and — though it does not include many details, including its overall cost – it looks like it would cost more than $1.5 billion dollars as well.
We know that state lawmakers like to spend big – especially in election years. This proposal seems like good politics, but fails the “fiscal responsibility” test. Our view of an “Affordable NY” is a state government that spends less, so that it takes less money out of taxpayers’ pockets.