In President Biden’s broad social spending proposal, approved by the House on Friday, New York received a significant bump in the so-called SALT tax relief, as well as a river of cash for housing, schools, and health care.
The inclusion of a clause doubling the permitted federal deduction for state and local taxes to $80,000 drew applause from suburban and upstate politicians.
“It will literally put billions of dollars back in the pockets of millions of people in New York City,” said Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY), who represents parts of Queens and Long Island.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) indicated through a spokeswoman that he wants to “push hard” to maintain SALT relief in the package when it comes up for a vote in the Senate.
Republicans reduced the SALT deduction to $10,000 in their 2017 tax reform law, which some Democrats saw as a partisan retaliation against high-tax blue states like New York, New Jersey, and California.
Raising the SALT ceiling is still a difficult and unresolved issue in the $1.85 trillion plan. It will cost more than $220 billion, which will be a tough pill for some to swallow, especially given the majority of the benefits would go to the wealthy.
Progressives are likewise opposed to lifting the SALT ceiling, yet they voted in unison for the measure regardless.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) has promised to change the SALT provision, maybe by decreasing the new maximum to $40,000 and/or setting a $400,000 income limit to qualify for it.
Aside from SALT, New York will profit disproportionately from huge new expenditures in universal pre-kindergarten spending and Medicare expansion.
In addition, the plan would pump roughly $3 billion into the 9/11 health program to help close a financial deficit.
New York should also receive more than its fair share of the $100 billion for public housing. The municipal housing authority is the largest in the country, with over 500,000 New Yorkers living in over 300 complexes across the five boroughs.
The nation would also profit significantly from the hundreds of billions of dollars in changing climate spending. For decades, New York, like other northern states, has suffered from environmental deterioration caused by pollutants emitted by Midwest smokestack industries, concerns that would be alleviated by the anticipated move to renewable energy.
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