Progressives are driving away residents, millionaires
New York’s number 1 – declining population. Yes, for the second year in a row we “led” the country by deporting the most people. And, more alarmingly, the biggest earners who pay the most taxes in the state are leaving with them.
The double whammy spells economic doom for the Empire State.
First, the general decline. This time, we got the dubious first-place award as a measure of the percentage of a state’s population shrinking (.9%) AND the absolute size of the drop (about 180,000). What an achievement!
The grim number now brings New York’s population loss, for the two-year period ending last summer, to a staggering 431,000, about 2% of the state’s total. And it is clear that this is being driven by immigration: New York’s birth rate is much higher than its death rate.
Also, the decline here happened with the growth of other states. Texas had the largest absolute increase, by 471,000; Florida took the crown for the largest percentage increase, 1.9%. Our loss seems to be their gain.
Most disturbing: The rich have fled in droves. After all, they can afford!
Between 2019 and 2020, the state lost 9.5% of its income tax filers making over $750,000 and 1.3% of its millionaires — after then-Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s top-earner tax hike, which was intended to paid for our overreaction to COVID and made New York the highest taxed state in the country.
Drivers are not difficult to understand. One was the terrible (and useless) state mandates for COVID, which closed businesses and schools, disrupted social life, and harmed millions, all while doing nothing substantial to save lives.
Those rules are, thankfully, a thing of the past, but their disappearance hasn’t changed the other big issue here: that our gentlemen in Albany have created an economic climate that punishes wealthy job creators and average Joes through taxes and stratospheric regulations. that hoard businesses and create massive housing (and soon, energy) shortages and criminal justice policies that fuel crime in the Big Apple as well as smaller cities and towns around the state.
Of course, other factors, such as the weather, may also contribute to New York’s decline. But there’s no denying that many now-former New Yorkers are fed up with the state’s radically progressive politics, which take a heavy toll on the quality of life here — from jobs to schools to crime to taxes.
And the loss of the wealthiest New Yorkers, in particular, means big trouble ahead for the state’s (and the city’s) economy and fiscal future. These are people, remember, who own and run the companies that provide jobs and investment to help the state grow. And New York hang on their tax income to cover the cost of all the things progressives demand: In 2020, the top 1% of earners pay 46% of all income tax in the state.
whether these people go, so do all the social programs the leftists want. To say nothing of jobs, whether on Wall Street or elsewhere. And with New York facing a fiscal cliff — a $6.2 billion deficit projected for FY 2026 — capital outflows mean tax hikes for everyone or cuts to services people rely on, often for their basic needs.
Here’s the indisputable bottom line: Unless New York’s progressives finally face reality and abandon their punitive policies, the state will continue to shrink — and with it, its economy, its tax base and its future. .