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Cuomo plan links SUNY tax-free zones with new business

Ryan Delaney
Gov. Andrew Cuomo waits to make his pitch for tax-free zones during his visit to Syracuse.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo unveiled a plan today that would entice new businesses to locate near SUNY campuses. The initiative is called “Tax Free NY” and it would allow businesses to operate without paying income, sales, property or business taxes for a period of ten years.

The plan aims to attract businesses such as software companies, high-tech companies, and advanced manufacturers. Cuomo says it will enable businesses to 'lean on' SUNY institutions for support, increasing the chances that businesses will succeed.

"We create great businesses here in this state, because we have great schools and we have great young minds. We lose them within the first year. Why? Because we have an anti-businesses reputation were a high tax state. So, we form the business then they leave and they go to a state with lower taxes. What we want to do is create an environment where those businesses stay here and create jobs here,” says Cuomo.

Cuomo says the plan would not take away from existing businesses, because job creation will bring more people to the area and in turn drive a reduction in taxes for those businesses.

“These are new jobs that wouldn’t have existed anyway, so there is not lost revenue to the state. These are all new jobs that aren’t paying anything, so if you keep the job here rather than let it leave you actually make money,” says Cuomo.

Cuomo says there is enough space available on SUNY campuses to support the startups. The state will also make roughly three-million-square feet of commercial office space available at private universities as well.


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