Quinn-Bloomberg tax goes Kerflooey

Remember last October, it was the same Frick and Frack claiming the world would end unless they were able to stand for re- election, that it was their competence that was necessary to protect the city in these tough times?

But in reality, it was their malfeasance and give-aways to developers and corporations that -- in large part -- led the city's finances to the ruin they are now in. So while Bloomberg is cutting every social service he can get his hands on, convincing the same union members who just lost their jobs that he's their savior, at the same time he and Quinn agreed to increase the budget for 13 of the city's 59 BIDs anywhere from 8-30%. According to Globe Street, the 34th Street Business Improvement District will get $9.3 million more. The Steinway Street BID (Queens) is getting a 30% increase.

Who pays for all this? Until a few hours ago, it seemed we all would in the form of a Sales Tax increase approved by Bloomberg and Quinn.

But the news today reveals that the sales tax, which must be approved in Albany, just went poof! With no end in site to the Albany mess, you can be certain that Bloomberg and Quinn will find some other worthy cause to eviscerate. They are already making the homeless pay shelter rent. Will Quinn next stick it to Widows and Orphans?

But the thought struck us that Quinn has all this real money in fake accounts waiting for her to give it away to political allies. Perhaps her Slush Fund could save some libraries or Fire Stations. Maybe all the real estate money she's been pocketing could go for something other than her campaign coffers? And perhaps the city could just stop massive give-aways to her friends: developers like Durst, Extell (Gary Barnett), David and Jed Walentas (Two-Trees), and Steinbrenner. See the Daily News story after the jump.

NYC Sales Tax Derailed
June 30, 2009
NY Daily News

The sales tax increase the city needs to balance its budget hit a huge road block in the form of Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr.

The measure, which is being carried by Sen. Liz Krueger, was on tap for passage this afternoon by the Senate Democrats at the session they are holding courtsey of the (unintended and disputed) participation by GOP Sen. Frank Padavan.

Things were steaming right along in the chamber, with the clerk announcing bills passed 32-0, until Diaz suddenly stood up, protesting loudly that the proceedings should come to a halt because he wanted to lay a bill aside.

Krueger then stood and told the clerk that she had "starred" the bill - S.5897 - which would have prevented the measure from moving. She later corrected herself, saying she actually wanted it "temporarily laid aside," which means the bill is controversial and needs to be debated.

A vote was called, and the bill failed: 19-13. (It would have failed anyway, since there are only 31 members physically in the chamber; but Padavan was apparently counted in the affirmative).

The "no" votes were: Adams, Addabbo, Diaz, Dilan, Hassell-Thompson, Kruger (Carl), Monserrate, Montgomery, Onorato, Parker, Perkins, Sampson, Smith.

Before the vote, Sen. Malcolm Smith asked for the Senate to stand at ease, which gave reporters a chance to speak with Diaz Sr., who said he opposes balancing the budget "on the back of the poor." (He said he was OK with the millionaire's tax that was included in the 2009-2010 state budget).

"No more tax for the city of New York," he said. "Because the people of the City of New York, the members of my district, are paying too much taxes. Yesterday. Yesterday, the MTA increased the fare...No more taxes for the City of New York. Not just me. There's a group of them. Let's see what happens. Me personally, I'm tried of taxes."

Diaz Sr. suggested that if Bloomberg needs money to balance the budget, he should take it out of his own pocket, perhaps diverting some of the cash (close to $20 million already) that he has been dropping on his re-election campaign.

Monserrate was the only other senator to explain his vote. He stood to "echo the sentiment" expressed by Diaz Sr., saying the city needs a "much better and more progressive tax scheme."