Gov. Andrew Cuomo will call for $2 billion in tax breaks and for funding pre-kindergarten statewide over five years as part of his budget proposal Tuesday.
The Democratic governor will detail his spending plan for the 2014-15 fiscal year at 2 p.m. near the state Capitol.
Cuomo will propose ways to close a $1.7 billion deficit by limiting state spending to less than 2 percent, which he estimates will create a $500 million surplus that would grow to $2 billion in two years.
The surplus would fund a $2 billion plan to freeze property taxes for two years and cut an array of business taxes as Cuomo seeks a second term in November.
“Our taxes had become the highest in the nation, and we were paying a price for those high taxes. People and businesses were leaving the state,” Cuomo said in State of State address Jan. 8.
Cuomo has been under pressure from New York City lawmakers and Mayor Bill de Blasio to allow the city to raise income taxes on the rich to fund pre-kindergarten for four-year-old students.
Cuomo has not backed the tax increase and instead will call for $1.5 billion in state funding over five years to fund the program statewide, the Daily News first reported. Administration officials Tuesday confirmed the details, which will also include using revenue from four upstate casinos to fund after-school programs statewide.
Education groups want Cuomo to increase state aid for schools by at least 6 percent for the fiscal year that starts April 1.
Cuomo has hinted that school aid would be kept consistent with the past two years, when it rose by about 4 percent a year to more than $20 billion annually.
“It’s not about the money. It’s about the performance,” Cuomo said Friday in a radio interview.
Cuomo’s proposal will include a plan to revamp the state’s brownfield cleanup program, an oft-criticized tax credit to developers who clean and build on contaminated sites, Gannett’s Albany Bureau reported Tuesday.
The brownfield program, which is set to expire next year, would be extended for 10 years under the Cuomo plan, according to administration officials.
Cuomo’s budget will also add $4 million to the state’s Environmental Protection Fund, which provides grants for projects that cut down on pollution and improve parks and open space. The fund would increase to $157 million, up from the current year’s $153 million.
The governor will also propose legislation to cut title-insurance fees by 20 percent for new home purchases and 60 percent for refinancing, the New York Post reported Tuesday.
The Associated Press said Cuomo plans to announce $10 million to establish a police database to help local departments.