State Senate Republicans Calling for Subsidy Accountability?
Last week Republican State Senator George Maziarz, penned an op-ed in The Buffalo News calling for significant reforms in the way that Industrial Development Agencies (IDA) across the state hand out tax-payer dollars to businesses. In the coming days he will introduce sweeping reform legislation in the Senate that could drastically alter the expectations for companies that receive public subsidies. An identical bill will be introduced in the Assembly by Democratic Assembly Member Bob Sweeney, a long-time advocate of IDA reform.
The anticipated introduction of this legislation comes as a flurry of activity is taking place around the state on the issue. Last night, the Ulster County Legislature passed a resolution, 31-0, supporting key reform measures including wage and environmental standards, increased reporting and transparency, and measures for recouping subsidies when promises have not been met. The Rockland and Erie County Legislatures have both introduced similar resolutions aimed at consolidating support for the passage of state-wide reform. And on this coming Monday in Rochester, Buffalo, and Yonkers community activist will be joined by their local and state representative to commemorate Tax Day by holding press events and demonstrations calling for greater accountability in the use of public dollars and higher expectations for the recipients of our generous subsidies.
This subsidy accountability campaign represents one of those critical opportunities to tie upstate and downstate communities together, to identify and work on common problems, and to resist the temptation to fight one another for dwindling state resources. Real and meaningful subsidy accountability gives our regions, communities, and neighborhoods an important tool to alter how development happens and how economic strategies are implemented. Ultimately for both upstate and downstate communities, we need comprehensive economic strategies that are about increasing the quality of jobs, increasing access to those jobs, and developing communities in a healthy and sustainable way. Passing IDA reform this year will take us a long way toward more strategic and focused use of our tax dollars.
Adrianne Shropshire: Author Bio | Other Posts
Posted at 10:32 AM, Apr 12, 2006 in Community Development | Economic Opportunity | Economy | Fiscal Responsibility | Government Accountability | Labor | New York
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