Education Tax Credit Shows Early Momentum in 2016 NYS Legislative Session

The 2016 session of the New York State Legislature kicked into gear this week with Governor Andrew Cuomo’s state of the state address, and action by the State Senate on legislation for an Education Scholarship Tax Credit.

As part of his state of the state speech, Governor Cuomo unveiled his 2016-17 Executive Budget proposal which includes scholarship tax credits as part of his proposed “Parental Choice in Education Act.” His plan would provide up to $67 million in new PK-12 scholarship money for children from low-income and middle-income households to attend an independent or parochial school.

The governor’s proposal also includes tax credits to encourage charitable donations to public schools, school districts and not-for-profit entities that provide educational services, including after-school and pre-kindergarten programs; tax credits to reimburse teachers up to $200 annually for out-of-pocket expenses for classroom supplies and materials; and $500 tuition tax credits for parents to offset tuition expenses for their children.

The governor’s proposal follows State Senate passage of the scholarship tax credit on a bipartisan vote of 47-to-15 at the start of the week. (See below for a roll call of the vote.)  The bipartisan Senate bill (# S.1976-A) is co-sponsored by 21 Democrats and Republicans, including co-lead sponsors Sen. Martin Golden (Republican) and Sen. Simcha Felder (Democrat), both of Brooklyn. The Senate version of the scholarship tax credit would provide $56 million in new scholarship money for children from low-income and middle class families, growing to an annual amount of $167 million. Identical donation amounts would be available for public education and non-profit entities providing public educational programming.

The State Assembly has not yet action on the scholarship tax credit, even though there is majority support for such legislation in that house of the State Legislature.

Please contact us if you have any questions or wish to discuss this issue in further detail.

State Senate supporters of the Education Scholarship Tax Credit:

Joe Addabbo (D) Queens
Fred Akshar (R) Broome/Tioga
George Amedore (R) Albany/Schenectady/Montgomery/Greene/Ulster
Tony Avella (D) Queens
John Bonacic (R) Orange/Delaware/Sullivan/Ulster
Phil Boyle (R) Suffolk
David Carlucci (D) Rockland/Westchester
Tom Croci (R) Suffolk
John DeFrancisco (R) Onondaga/Cayuga
Ruben Diaz (D) Bronx
Martin Malave Dilan (D) Brooklyn
Hugh Farley (R) Schenectady/Saratoga/Fulton/Hamilton/Herkimer
Simcha Felder (D) Brooklyn
John Flanagan (R) Suffolk
Richard Funke (R) Monroe/Ontario
Patrick Gallivan (R) Erie/Wyoming/Livingston/Monroe
Martin Golden (R) Brooklyn
Joe Griffo (R) Oneida/Lewis/St.Lawrence
Jesse Hamilton (D) Brooklyn
Kemp Hannon (R) Nassau
Ruth Hassell-Thompson (D) Bronx/Westchester
Tim Kennedy (D) Erie
Jeff Klein (D) Bronx/Westchester
Andrew Lanza (R) Staten Island
Bill Larkin (R) Orange/Rockland/Ulster
George Latimer (D) Westchester
Ken LaValle (R) Suffolk
Elizabeth Little (R) Warren/Washington/Essex/Clinton/Franklin/St.Lawrence
Carl Marcellino (R) Nassau/Suffolk
Kathy Marchione (R) Saratoga/Rensselaer/Columbia/Washington
Jack Martins (R) Nassau
Terrance Murphy (R) Westchester/Putnam/Dutchess
Robert Ortt (R) Niagara/Orleans/Monroe
Michael Nozzolio (R) Seneca/Wayne/Cayuga/Monroe/Ontario/Tompkins
Tom O’Mara (R) Chemung/Steuben/Yates/Schuyler/Tompkins
Kevin Parker (D) Brooklyn
Roxanne Persaud (D) Brooklyn
Mike Ranzenhofer (R) Erie/Genesee/Monroe
Patti Ritchie (R) Jefferson/St.Lawrence/Oswego
Joe Robach (R) Monroe
Diane Savino (D) Brooklyn/Staten Island
Sue Serino (R) Dutchess/Putnam
James Seward (R) Otsego/Schoharie/Cortland/Delaware/Chenango/Tompkins/Ulster/Cayuga
Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D) Westchester
David Valesky (D) Onondaga/Madison/Oneida
Michael Venditto (R) Nassau/Suffolk
Catharine Young (R) Cattaraugus/Chautauqua/Alleghany/Livingston

State Senate opponents of the Education Scholarship Tax Credit:

Neil Breslin (D) Albany/Rensselaer
Leroy Comrie (D) Queens
Adriano Espaillat (D) Manhattan
Michael Gianaris (D) Queens
Brad Hoylman (D) Manhattan
Liz Krueger (D) Manhattan
Velmanette Montgomery (D) Brooklyn
Marc Panepinto (D) Erie
Jose Peralta (D) Queens
Bill Perkins (D) Manhattan
Gustavo Rivera (D) Bronx
James Sanders (D) Queens
Jose Serrano (D) Bronx
Daniel Squadron (D) Brooklyn/Manhattan
Toby Ann Stavisky (D) Queens