Start spreading the news, we’re leaving today: Leaving New York and moving to Florida

Where have we heard this before? Who said people will move out and head to places where they pay lower taxes?  It’s happening in New York, New York. This is the story

New York State is giving away the goose that laid the golden egg — its highest-earning taxpayers. 

Last week, an analysis by Bloomberg’s Justin Fox showed that the flight of affluent taxpayers and the end of the market bull run has caused state personal income tax receipts to fall below their pre-pandemic 2019 level. 

This should ring alarm bells in Albany, as State Operating Fund spending, comprising most state-funded operating activities, is about $25 billion higher in the recently enacted budget than it was in FY 2019–20.   As monthly tax collections fall short and fiscal reality bites into these spending commitments, public leaders will be forced to confront (and correct) a hard reality: New York has become a less attractive place to live.

New York’s tax base has eroded for most of the last decade. 

As the Empire Center’s E. J. McMahon has shown through his close tracking of New York migration and tax statistics, New York’s share of national tax returns with incomes over $1 million declined throughout the 2010s.   

In 2020, 1,973 millionaire-earner filers exited the state, followed by 1,453 in 2021—far above the 696 who left in 2019. Following a 2021 tax hike on top earners, 8 percent of taxpayers earning over $25 million fled. 

A mid-May New York Times analysis also revealed that New York City has led American cities in hemorrhaging college-educated residents for over a decade, losing over 100,000 such residents in 2021 alone — about as many as the 11 other most expensive large metros combined.

Who saw this coming?  Well, add crime and security factors, and you will end up with a city people avoid.

What must frustrate New Yorkers is that their leadership seems so detached from reality.  At the same time, let’s remind the New Yorkers that they voted for these leaders.  The good news is that they can start the comeback of a great city by voting for a new cast of leaders.  Let’s hope that they do.

In the meantime, start spreading the news, ’cause the taxpayers are leaving today, and nobody wants to be a part of New York, New York. They’d rather be a part of Florida. For more, check out our discussion with New Yorker Bill Katz, the editor of Urgent Agenda:

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