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A Sign of Our Times




Grand Jury Report critical of Smithtown town
nments supervision
of commercial
property demolition…

The Grand Jury Report is public record and available at the link below. It is 40 pages, but double spaced, and well worth the few minutes it takes to read it.

Please feel free to share your comments with us.

Click on link for Full Report






Sign of our Times

By Eric Sailor

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« Congressman Zeldin Sides With Those Fighting For Gateway Tunnel Project | Main | NYS Senate Passes School Safety Package »

Senator Schumer Offers His Plan For Rebuilding NY's Aging Infrastructure


Schumer’s Infrastructure Plan Will Create Jobs And Provide The Federal Funding Needed To Upgrade Upstate LI/New York’s Crumbling Water-Sewer Systems, Roads, Bridges, Energy Grids, Improve Access To High-Speed Internet And Build New Schools

Schumer: This is A Real Plan to Rebuild Our Decrepit Roads, Bridges & Water-Sewer Systems

On a call with Reporters, U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer today announced his Jobs and Infrastructure Plan that would make a historic $1 trillion federal investment to help modernize Long Island’s and New York’s crumbling infrastructure and create thousands of jobs that New York’s economy desperately needs. Schumer highlighted specific infrastructure projects in Long Island and across  New York that need upgrades including roads, bridges, large transit systems, water-and-sewer systems, and the electrical grid, as well as the creation of new projects for rural broadband, storm- and flood-mitigation and resiliency, new schools and workforce-training facilities

“There is no question Long Island needs more help from the federal government on important infrastructure projects, and this plan helps deliver the help— without crushing local Long Island taxpayers,” said U.S. Senator Charles Schumer. “We need to pave the way for real infrastructure funding that revives our economy, ensures public safety and doesn’t crush local taxpayers with billions of dollars in past neglect. This new infrastructure and jobs plan does just that, providing direct federal resources and investment to fix New York’s aging sewers, transit needs, roads, schools and bridges.

Schumer added, “We have unveiled a new plan, because it is clear we need a wide-sweeping infrastructure strategy – and we need it now. The administration talked a big game on infrastructure investment, but then delivered a plan that just won’t get the job done. Well, this plan will; Our plan would create more jobs than the administration plan, build more projects, and build the infrastructure America actually needs, not just what crony donors and private investors can profit from. It is one of the most comprehensive overhaul proposals in a generation, and now I, along with my colleagues in the Senate, are challenging the administration to work with us on this broad plan that will sustain our positive economic growth, create millions of jobs, and build a modern economy.”

In New York alone, the implications of minimal investment in infrastructure over the last few decades has become increasingly apparent. Schumer pointed to an American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) report stating that over half of New York’s 17,000 bridges are over 75 years old, and New York’s roadways are in increasingly worse condition, costing drivers hundreds of dollars a year in extra operating costs. In fact, ASCE estimates that poor road and bridge conditions in New York cost the average family with two cars over $1,000 a year.

Furthermore, downstate transit systems require tens-of-billions just to maintain a state of good repair. In addition to roads and transit systems, New York’s water and sewer systems are also starving for federal investment. Schumer highlighted that one out of every four of New York’s wastewater facilities is operating beyond its useful life, and 30 percent of New York’s 22,000 miles of underground sewers are more than 60 years old. A report by State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli put New York’s combined water and sewer needs at more than $30 billion.

A list of local projects that could benefit from the infrastructure proposal appears below:

  • Long Island
    • East Side Access
    • Sewer upgrades in Suffolk County
    • LIRR Upgrades
    • Smith Point Bridge overhaul in Suffolk
    • Continued upgrades to Nassau and Suffolk Sewer treatment plants

Specifically, the plan would be paid for responsibly through the following five measures:

-          Return The Top Individual Tax Rate Back To 39.6%

    • The Senate GOP’s lowering of the top rate to 37 percent was nothing more than a tax giveaway to the super rich, and such a provision would increase federal revenues to pay for infrastructure improvements by $139 billion over 10 years.

 -          Restoring The Individual Alternative Minimum Tax To 2017 Law

o   The AMT ensures that high-income earners cannot avoid taxes by abusing deductions and other loopholes, and returning it to 2017 law would not only ensure the top 1 percent pay their fair share, but it would also increase federal revenues by $429 billion over 10 years. 

-          Restoring The Estate And Gift Taxes

o   In their tax bill, Republicans doubled estate tax exemption levels to $11 million for individuals and a whopping $22 million for married couples, a maneuver that benefited no one other than millionaires and billionaires. Using the $83 billion in federal revenues it would bring back over 10 years could pay for massive infrastructure improvements that would benefit middle-class families.

-          Closing The Carried Interest Loophole

o   Despite campaign promises to end the carried interest loophole, President Trump and the Senate GOP let it continue, which enables Wall Street high fliers to continue disguising their income as capital gains to avoid taxes. Closing this loophole would increase federal revenues by $12 billion over 10 years. 

-          Bring The Corporate Tax Rate To 25% 

o   Raising the corporate tax rate to a competitive 25 percent would allow American businesses to stay competitive without providing a massive windfall to special interests that results in stock buybacks and CEO bonuses being prioritized over hiring new employees and increasing workers’ pay. Before the Republican tax bill, many corporations supported a 25 percent rate as a fair tax rate.  Reversing this trickle-down economic policy would bring in $359 billion that could be put toward infrastructure improvements across the country.


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