Reducing taxes is crucial for New York’s liberal politicians to retain residents

As we approach New Year’s Eve, it’s a great opportunity to take a moment for self-reflection and set resolutions for the upcoming year.

New York’s government should seize this opportunity and reevaluate its “progressive” policies, which are causing hundreds of thousands of individuals to leave the state annually.

New data released on Tuesday by the Census Bureau reveals a concerning trend for New York: the city is experiencing a significant loss of its most valuable resource – its people.

Between July 2022 and July 2023, a staggering 217,000 individuals opted to leave New York, surpassing the number of people who relocated to the city during that period.

During that time, a staggering 166,000 people lost their lives in New York.


The population is being negatively impacted in a way that is more severe than double the death rate due to the large number of people leaving the state compared to the number of deaths occurring there.

New York is gradually being drained by a series of self-inflicted wounds, including high taxes, wasteful government spending, and lenient crime policies.

In March 2021, I conducted a study that projected a staggering number of over 1 million New Yorkers would choose to relocate from the state within a span of 10 years due to the recent tax hike.

The official Census Bureau data has been consistent with that estimate.

New York already had the highest state and local tax burden as a percentage of residents’ income, even before the tax increase. This burden is nearly twice as high as that of other major states like Florida and Texas.

The greedy bureaucrats went beyond just that in 2021. They decided to increase not only the number of tax brackets but also the top marginal tax rate.

In New York City today, individuals with high incomes are subject to a top tax rate of nearly 15%.

Federal income and payroll taxes account for nearly 60% of the total amount.

It’s no surprise that a significant number of people have chosen to leave.

Moving to neighboring Pennsylvania now means paying a flat income tax at a rate that is lower than the lowest income bracket in New York.

New York is arguably in worse shape than any other state, despite politicians downplaying the negative incentives produced by their tax hikes. The numbers clearly show the concerning reality of the situation.

In just 12 months, the state experienced the largest drop in the nation with net losses from domestic migration amounting to 1.1% of its population.

Fleeing to tax havens

New Yorkers flocking to tax havens are outnumbering the state’s native population, resulting in a rapid decline in total population. This unsettling trend has positioned New York at the top of the list for the most significant decrease in population, both in absolute numbers and relative proportions.

Every time we celebrate the start of a new year, the Empire State’s economy takes another hit as a result of the ongoing exodus of its population. This recurring phenomenon is having a detrimental impact on New York’s economic prospects, and the situation only seems to be worsening with each passing year.

Between mid-2020 and mid-2023, the population of the state experienced a decline of 631,000 people.

When those individuals departed, they carried away their employment opportunities and sources of income.

The impact of this situation on the New York economy is significant, resulting in the loss of billions of dollars. Additionally, it is having a negative effect on state tax revenue, which goes against the expectations of politicians.

Even former Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who is not known for his fiscal conservatism, eventually acknowledged that excessively raising taxes can lead to people leaving.

Many individuals have chosen to escape in large numbers to low-tax states such as Florida, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas.

They rank 11th, ninth, third, and sixth, respectively, in terms of state and local tax burden.

During their New Year’s reflection, politicians often try to attribute this southbound migration to the warmer weather. However, it is worth considering the case of Wyoming for a moment.

Despite the harsh winters in Wyoming, more people are choosing to move to the Cowboy State over the Empire State.

Wyoming boasts the second-lowest tax burden in the nation, a remarkable feat considering it is less than half that of New York.

New York politicians need to recognize the detrimental effects of their excessive tax hikes on this once-thriving state.

One ideal New Year’s resolution for them could be to revamp the inefficient budget and utilize the resulting savings to offer some well-deserved assistance to diligent individuals in New York.

Unfortunately, New York’s “progressive” politicians have been fixated on this trajectory for many years, so it is unlikely that they will alter their course come January 1.

E.J. Antoni, a public finance economist at the Heritage Foundation and a senior fellow at the Committee to Unleash Prosperity, brings his expertise to the field.

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