By Azi Paybarah
If Andrew Cuomo makes adjustments to the state tax code that shift more of the burden from poor people to rich people without necessarily generating any more overall revenue for the cash-strapped government, is it truly progressive?
State Senator Liz Krueger, a liberal Democrat from Manhattan who wrote her master’s thesis on tax policy while at the University of Chicago, thinks not.
“The state needs the money,” Krueger told me Friday. “I think it’s imperative we not cut services for the neediest New Yorkers when demands are skyrocketing.”
“Once you decide you’re going to change the [tax] brackets, you can finesse in any direction,” she said. “My concern, after sort of having walked this through with the governor and then heard him actually talk about changing the brackets, or one of his people saying it, is you can do it neutral. You can do it tax-neutral: people earning more pay more, people earning less, pay less, but have a neutral outcome so that the changes you make within those brackets translate to no additional income in the state of New York.”