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Focus on Jobs, Cutting Taxes, Revamping School Aid Formula

Lower the cost of energy

According to the Public Policy Institute of New York, New Yorkers pay some $3.4 billion a year in taxes tucked out of sight in their electricity and gas bills. Two years ago, the state passed an enormous energy tax increase. This rate increase, though pennies on the average resident's utility bill, multiplies exponentially for manufacturers and employers. I voted against this measure in the Assembly and sponsored legislation to repeal this tax. However, our Democratic leaders saw that this repeal did not come to the Assembly floor. Energy costs are high enough without the frustration and burden of more taxes on a basic and essential commodity. We need to lower this tax. Lowering the cost of energy will help make us more competitive for jobs with other states. With our rankings with various foundations and organizations, we need all the help we can get to keep and attract jobs here.

This New Year gives us an opportunity to reinvent ourselves, as well as our state. There is much work to be done and I hope that this year provides opportunities to accomplish these goals together, rather than be stuck in political gridlock, waiting to hear what the three men in a room come up with. I am hopeful that most of us have ambitions for a productive session that truly represents our areas' interests. By cutting property taxes, lowering the cost of energy and doing business, reducing unfunded mandates for localities, and lowering property taxes, New York will become a better state to live and work in.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns regarding this or any other state matter, or if you would like to be added to my mailing list, contact me by mail at 200 North Second Street, Fulton, NY 13069, by e-mail at barclaw@assembly.state.ny.us, or by phone at (315) 598-5185.

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