Assemblyman Kieran Michael Lalor (R,C,I – East Fishkill) responded to Tuesday’s state comptroller audit, showing the $200 million New York spent on advertising economic development programs has produced “no tangible results”, with criticism for Governor Cuomo wasting tax dollars on ads that amounted to little more than Cuomo campaign marketing.
“No amount of advertising is going to change the reality that New York’s high taxes drive businesses and jobs away,” said Lalor. “The $200 million spent on advertising New York’s economic development programs hasn’t produced tangible results because it’s just smoke and mirrors. Businesses know New York is still highly taxed and over-regulated. Advertising doesn’t change that. Empire State Development actually told the auditors that the advertising ‘wasn’t intended to directly produce positive economic benefits.’ Then what did New Yorkers get for all that advertising spending? It looks like it was just $200 million in Cuomo campaign ads.
Lalor continued, “We’re not going to succeed by tricking people into thinking New York is all of a sudden low-tax and business-friendly. It’s hard to believe that our governor is relying on smoke and mirrors. We need to actually cut the taxes and regulations that drive businesses and jobs out of New York.”
“Corporate welfare masquerading as economic development is costing New Yorkers billions,” Lalor added. “Empire State Development Corporation, which administers Start-Up NY, spends 37 percent of its budget on interest payments on debt. Albany is throwing good money after bad.”