‘We’re not in a position to provide any subsidies right now because we have a $13 billion deficit…’
(Michael Barnes, Liberty Headlines) Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he’s grateful for all the help New York has received from heroic out-of-state charities and volunteer workers that have come to help those suffering from the deadly Wuhan virus outbreak.
But there’s no way they’re going to escape New York’s taxes, he said.
“We’re not in a position to provide any subsidies right now because we have a $13 billion deficit,” Cuomo said during a daily press briefing this week.
The statement came as a shock to organizations like Samaritan’s Purse, a Christian charity that built a temporary hospital in Central Park to treat ailing New Yorkers.
Officials at the charity were surprised to learn that they are now subject to a law imposing income taxes on individuals and organizations operating in the state for more than 14 days.
Poor financial decisions have plagued New York for years, and Cuomo appears to be using the COVID-19 crisis as an opportunity to extract revenue from charities, volunteers and the federal government.
When asked about taxing out-of-state coronavirus charities, Cuomo blamed Senate Republicans for forcing his hand since they are standing in the way of a federal bailout.
“So there’s a lot of good things I’d like to do, and if we get federal funding, we can do, but it would be irresponsible for me to sit here looking at a $13 billion deficit and say I’m gonna spend more money, when I can’t even pay the essential services,” he said.
Cuomo did not clarify how his claims of making difficult fiscal decisions related to the reality that he was simply demanding more in revenue.
He previously expressed confusion about the way taxes work by telling Congress that he was owed a refund on his state’s federal tax contributions.
Notably, Cuomo has indicated that federal bailout funds would also be used for non-coronavirus related spending items, such as shoring up the state’s drastically underfunded government employee pension system.
In terms of Wuhan virus cases and deaths, New York City is ground zero for the U.S pandemic, with some estimates that 65 percent of other U.S. cases spread from the Big Apple.
Decisions made by Cuomo regarding nursing homes and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s encouragement of crowded Chinese New Year celebrations in March also greatly contributed to the growth of the emergency.