Sen. Ritchie's survey finds 'overwhelming support' for cutting state taxes, spending
Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - 9:05 am

There is “overwhelming support” in the North Country for continued cuts in state taxes and spending, according to a survey conducted by State Senator Patty Ritchie’s office.

In an informal and unscientific survey on her web site called “Next Steps to a Stronger Economy,” three in five respondents named tax cuts and lower spending as their top priorities for state government this year.

People had the option to mail in ballots rather than answer online.

Forty-two percent of the nearly 2,000 participants in the six-question survey selected “Keep cutting taxes” as their first priority. Twenty percent selected “Reduce government spending.”

More than a third of those who chose the former selected the latter as their second choice.

Among the remaining choices, 17 percent chose “Reduce government regs and mandates”; 11 percent picked “Invest more in education”; three percent chose “Give direct credits to small businesses”; four percent chose “Invest in Roads.” The remaining three percent filled in the form wrong.

“Central and Northern New Yorkers agree that the best way to get our economy moving again and creating the jobs we need is to continue to reduce the size, cost and impact of government on taxpayers and small businesses,” Ritchie said.

“Working in a bipartisan fashion with a new governor and lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle, we are delivering the relief that New Yorkers need, and it’s clear that they want even more.”

Ritchie says that cutting taxes and reining in government spending, the top two choices, are among Senator Ritchie’s top priorities. Since taking office last year, she voted to enact a state budget that erased a $10 billion deficit without new taxes, and to reduce the size of New York’s budget for the first time in 15 years. She voted to cut the state’s income tax rate on middle class New Yorkers to its lowest in 58 years, to restore a sales tax cut on clothing purchases, and to cut taxes on manufacturers to help stimulate job growth upstate.

Ritchie, a Republican from Heuvelton, is serving her first term as senator from the 48th District, which comprises western St. Lawrence County and all of Jefferson and Oswego counties.