BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Governor Andrew Cuomo laid out two paths for the 2022 Budget Tuesday afternoon. One he calls “worst case” the other is what he’d consider “fair funding”.
And, spoiler alert, Cuomo said the state will sue if the federal government doesn’t provide what he considers to be “fair funding” to the amount of $15 billion.
That’s just about how much of a deficit the state’s budget will face as a result of the pandemic crisis.
“Now the bill for the battle has come due,” said Cuomo.
He said the deficit is the largest the state has ever faced, and New York was in strong financial shape prior to the crisis.
“The largest deficit in the state’s history was $10 billion and I managed a $10 billion deficit and it was very very hard. $15 billion in this environment is just impossible.”
Incoming President Joe Biden’s massive $1.9 trillion covid rescue plan includes $350 billion for state aid — Cuomo wants nearly 4% of that.
“We don’t know, in short, what level of aid we will get. But the budget is dependent on that federal aid.”
Budget directors are predicting anywhere from $6 billion to the $15 billion from the aid package.
The former would be what Cuomo is calling the “worst case scenario”.
“I would consider that the 2021 version of the federal government saying “drop dead” to New York.”
So what happens in the worst case?
Cuomo says it will require raising taxes on New Yorkers to the highest levels in the nation, cut expenses, and borrow massive amounts of money which will create a debt repayment burden for the next generation.
In addition to the $15 million, the governor wants the SALT tax repealed — which he believes will give the state back close to $12 billion.
“It was the first double taxation in history. What it did is it placed a federal tax on what a person paid in state, local, and property taxes,” said Cuomo.
The New York Budget must be passed by April 1 or there will be no raises for anyone working in state government, according to Cuomo.