By RYAN WICKER
Since being elected to local office in 2009, State Senator Terrence Murphy has fought to lower the infamous tax burden associated with New York State and the Hudson Valley. On Thursday, the freshman Senator from Westchester approved a state budget that delivered a historic tax cut for residents of the Empire State.
“It is no secret that New York residents, especially in the Hudson Valley, continue to battle incredibly strong headwinds to be able to afford to live here,” Senator Murphy said. “This comprehensive package will be directly felt in the pockets of middle class taxpayers and actually provide real relief.”
The budget lowers personal income tax rates through a package, that when fully phased in, provides a twenty percent income tax rate cut affecting an estimated four million middle class families across New York. This will stand as the lowest personal income tax rate since 1946.
In addition to providing significant tax relief, the budget Senator Murphy approved also fulfilled his promise of record school aid and the full restoration of the Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA). The GEA was first imposed in 2010 by former Governor David Paterson and shifted critical dollars from our local classrooms to plug glaring holes in the state budget caused by pure fiscal mismanagement of a one party rule system, Murphy said. Hudson Valley schools were disproportionately affected by having significant dollars driven to schools in New York City. Last year alone, Senator Murphy led the charge to return $603 million to local classrooms across the state and vowed to restore the remaining $434 million in this year’s budget.
“I know the value of an education and as a father with three children in public schools I know how important it is to ensure our local classrooms receive the funding they need to provide the superior level of education New Yorkers have come to expect,” Murphy continued. “While the GEA has slowly been repaired over the past few years, its final elimination will put real dollars in the classrooms of the Hudson Valley. I am proud to have led this fight since coming to Albany and appreciate the hard work by our local school superintendents, school board members, faculty and staff who have partnered with me to see this through.”
This year’s budget also ensures a fair living wage in the future for New York’s workers in a responsible manner, Murphy said. Over the course of six years, portions of New York State will see the minimum wage increase, with the protections of regional economic parameters, studies overseen by the Division of Budget and overall condition of our economy.
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