New York Senate Republicans Push $2 Billion Tax-Cut Plan

New York Senate Republicans are pushing for more than $2 billion in tax cuts and credits, mostly by reviving a rebate program killed in 2009.

They would also increase the deduction for child-care expenses, and more than double the one for dependents, to $2,020, as well as boost credits for children ages 4 to 16. The changes, along with $1.3 billion in revived property-tax rebates, will be presented in budget negotiations, Senator Dean Skelos, the Republican leader from Long Island, said at a news briefing in Albany. He said New Yorkers need the help.

“Federal payroll taxes went up, paychecks got smaller, the cost of health care, gas and tuition have gone through the roof, and family budgets are squeezed even tighter,” Skelos said. “Just when families find a way to make ends meet, somebody moves the ends.”

The chances of the package becoming part of the budget for fiscal 2014, which begins April 1, are complicated by power-sharing between the Republicans and six breakaway Senate Democrats. Skelos leads the chamber with Jeff Klein, a Bronx Democrat, whose party holds a majority in the Assembly and the governor’s office.

Funding Sources

Funding for the proposed changes may come out of $2.5 billion for economic-development programs and grants for low-income school districts that Governor Andrew Cuomo included in his $136.5 billion budget proposal, Skelos said today.

Klein supports child-related tax cuts and reviving the rebate program, which effectively reduces the levies on primary residences that property owners pay to schools, while he said today that he wants to see details on how they’d be covered.

Cuomo is willing to negotiate, he said today at a separate news briefing in Albany, the capital.

“There’s always wiggle room” in the budget, Cuomo said. “I have learned to wiggle over the last few years.”

Under the Senate proposal, the average property-tax rebate check would be $445. It also would increase the child-tax credit, available to married joint filers who earn less than $130,000 annually. It would rise to $375 from $330 and there would be an additional $500 credit per family.

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