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Cuomo Touts Tax Free NY at BU

(Source: Jason Weinstein)

"And it's not just the reputation and it's not just the perception. It's the reality. We are a high-tax state," said New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Governor Cuomo's solution to lowering those taxes to attract new business and jobs to the state is the Tax Free NY Program. The plan would turn SUNY campuses, including Binghamton University, into tax-free zones for new businesses.

"We know we have the great schools and we know we have the great talent going to those schools. And we know that we're creating jobs. We also know we're losing 75 percent of those jobs in the first year," said Cuomo.

Cuomo says the plan targets Upstate New York since 55 of the 64 SUNY campuses are upstate. Companies creating new jobs, out-of-state businesses that relocate to New York and existing businesses that expand their New York operations while maintaining their existing jobs would be eligible to be in these tax-free zones.

"I can tell you I spend all day on the telephone talking to businessmen trying to talk them into coming into this state and try to talk them into not leaving this state to go to a lower-tax state. So if you have a no-tax zone businesses will go there," said Cuomo.

Cuomo dismissed comparisons of this program to the Empire Development Zone Program, which created tax-advantaged areas for businesses and which Cuomo ended in 2010.

"There are no subsidies to businesses. If they don't create any jobs they don't get any subsidy. They're just not paying taxes. So if they don't create any jobs they don't get any benefit because they're not saving taxes," said Cuomo.

According to Cuomo's office businesses will have to submit certification to the state to prevent defrauding the program, and falsifying certifications will be a crime.

****In Vestal, Jason Weinstein, FOX 40 HD News****

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