Home Asides State GOP may wait til ’12 to attack MTA payroll tax

State GOP may wait til ’12 to attack MTA payroll tax

by Benjamin Kabak

A group of Long Island Republicans who won entry into Albany last fall did so on the promise that they would immediately work to repeal the state mobility tax. Claiming that this tax, which generates $1.4 billion in annual revenue for the MTA, is a “job-killing” one, these representatives want to shift even more of the MTA funding burden onto the shoulders of city residents while at the same time enjoying the benefits of a vibrant commuter transit system. Now, though, it seems as though those repeal efforts are going to have to wait.

As Newsday reported this morning, State Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos may be tabling repeal efforts until 2012 due to concerns over political leverage. Because the GOP would prefer to wrest other concessions out of state Democrats who, by and large, support the payroll mobility tax, Skelos may wait for a better opening before launching his assault on the MTA dollars. “When we can, we will take it up,” he said.

Meanwhile, Republicans recognize that they can’t just take this money away from the MTA without offering up replacement funds. While we don’t yet know what shape or form the compromise will take, Sen. Lee Zeldin says he is “studying ways to make up for revenue losses that would occur.” The payroll tax — just 34 cents per $100 — will remain alive, controversial and in the news for another year yet.

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Veinus April 1, 2011 - 1:23 pm

Of COURSE they want to wait until they can use it as a campaign issue. It wouldn’t be NY State politics if they didn’t!

Bolwerk April 1, 2011 - 2:12 pm

You seem to be giving Republikans way too much credit here. They seem to think money comes from pixies these days.

Donald April 1, 2011 - 2:23 pm

The Republicans say they are goiing to wait until 2012 to repeal the payroll tax. IN OTHER WORDS, they don’t have the votes and know that such a scheme would never get past the Assembly or Gov. Cuomo. Nothing is going to change in 2012. It stil will not pass.

Alon Levy April 1, 2011 - 6:59 pm

+1. The Republicans are gambling on winning a huge upset in 2012. Unlike in Wisconsin or Florida, they don’t have an unpopular Teabagger who can’t govern around their neck, but the national environment will still be bad for them, with an improving economy, Obama on the ballot, and most likely a really crazy Republican nominee pissing off Northern moderates.

Al D April 1, 2011 - 4:17 pm

They should be required to watch the 1986 subway video you posted here before going on a budget cutting rampage.

will April 1, 2011 - 9:29 pm

how about we abolish access-a-ride and save a half-billion or so, and then double this tax to pay for real mass transit.


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