Small Business Reacts to Final Budget Deal

After the announced agreement last week, negotiations on a variety of issues continued through the weekend.  Today, we issued the following statement on the final state budget deal.

ALBANY (March 25, 2013) – All of the following may be attributed to Mike Durant, State Director of NFIB in response to the announced agreement on the 2014-15 State Fiscal Plan

“As final negotiations on the state budget have officially concluded, it has become apparent that the momentum to revitalize the state’s economy has stalled.  Unfortunately calls by the small business community to reduce the stifling tax burden, to focus on eliminating assessments on energy use and to reject a devastating increase in labor costs have fallen on deaf ears.

“It is increasingly clear that an agenda which is eerily similar to our recent past is now the driving force in Albany and it will negate the incremental progress our State made in the past two years.  It comes at the expense of small business and the Upstate economy.  While this agreement includes tax breaks and credits for both employers and the middle class, Main-Street businesses and taxpayers deserve better.  The token relief does not offset the increased costs associated with the minimum wage increase or the extension of the 18-a energy assessment.

“We appreciate those lawmakers who have stood with small business during these discussions.  The agenda for the remaining months of this legislative session will be telling.  We hope the effort to improve the business climate in New York, which remains one of the worst in the country, resumes.  Anything less will be unacceptable.”

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About Mike Durant

Mike Durant was named New York State Director of NFIB in May 2011. Prior to joining NFIB as the Assistant State Director in May 2010, Durant began his career in the New York Senate working in the Office of Member Services. From there, he served in a number of positions during former New York Governor George E. Pataki’s administration. As a Research Specialist in the New York State Office of Demographic Policy, Mike was responsible for drafting a redistricting proposal for Governor Pataki. In addition, Mike served as a Research Specialist for the Empire State Development Corporation, as well as the Associate Commissioner of Human Resource Management with the New York Department of Labor. Durant also spent four years working at the Questar III BOCES as a specialist focusing on the complex formulas that drive aid to school districts across the state while also taking a lead role in the state legislative/budget process as it related to education policy. These past positions have given Mike a deep understanding of the complex political economics of the State of New York. Active in the community, Durant has served on a number of boards in both the village of Ballston Spa and Town of Milton. Durant received his bachelor’s degree from Siena College in Loudonville, New York and resides in Ballston Spa with his wife and two children.
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