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Your Money, Your Exemption

by on March 27, 2012

It’s quite benevolent of New York State to let you keep a little more of what you make. Your tribute burden has been reduced, which is particularly nice considering that your money really belongs to the government anyway.

News of slight tax relief seems even kinder when one considers that New York is tightening its belt in solidarity with residents who have been forced to choose between buying vehicle fuel or lunch. Shoppers will owe a little less to Albany when they purchase something as inessential as garments:

A sales-tax exemption on clothing purchases under $110 will go back into effect starting April 1. It comes after the exemption was lifted in October 2010. The tax phased out starting in March 2011, with an exemption on clothes purchases under $55.

The restored tax exemption will apply to all clothes and shoes less than $110.

The state levied a full sales tax of 4 percent from October 2010 to March 2011 to raise revenue amid its fiscal woes. The state made $330 million during the period.

“Made” isn’t the right word. In reality, people made $330 million, and New York took it. So, thanks for the modestly narrow break:

“Certainly New Yorkers are among the highest taxed in the nation and any type of relief we can provide I think we should,” said Assemblyman Bill Reilich, R-Greece, Monroe County.

Reilich said the exemptions would help ease some of the tax burden on state residents, albeit in a small way. New York has among the highest taxes in the nation.

In other breaking news, next month is April. New York will continue to rake it in as long as citizens don’t discover that other states exist:

The Retail Council of New York State, a trade association that represents the state’s retailers, said promotion of the exemptions could help the state’s clothing stores compete with neighboring states.

“From the retail industry’s perspective here in New York, (the exemption) dilutes the competitive advantage that retailers enjoy in neighboring states with no sales tax on clothing, Massachusetts and Vermont,” said Melissa Googas, the assistant director of government relations at the Retail Council.

But we’re here to serve the capital. They can’t buy us things unless they get our money up front:

Sales-tax revenue is the largest revenue source for county governments, and they’ve been reluctant to adopt the exemption because of their own fiscal woes.

As usual, the state strives to appropriate as much as they can instead of striving to do only what’s absolutely necessary with the smallest budget imaginable. Even a teeny sanctuary from levies is portrayed as an unimaginable burden on lawmakers. Who cares how many hours it took people to earn that money? They don’t want to hear about your day at work: they just want their allowance.

New York’s vision remains remarkably short-sighted: approximately zero consideration is given to how the cut sent to the state affects those from whom it’s taken. People would have just bought more if they weren’t losing the percentage in question as penalty for engaging in commerce.

But it’s not like tax cuts would help the economy or anything. Instead, your leaders take as much as they can to fund their bloated dreams.

The mild tax relief is welcome, but it should be the start. Instead, the elected class will moan that they are starving with only a bucket of the Colonel’s chicken for lunch without any gravy on their mashed potatoes.

They’re not taking our money on a single type of purchase, and we’re such ingrates that we won’t even thank them. Talk about being dressed down.

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