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Shumlin Takes a Dig at Cuomo's "Start-Up NY" Ads and Plan

You may have seen the ads: they promise you can "start a business here and pay no taxes for ten years."
BURLINGTON - You may have seen the ads: they promise you can "start a business here and pay no taxes for ten years."

Produced by Empire State Development, the ads tout "Start-Up NY," a tax incentive plan to grow business in New York State.

At a Lake Champlain Chamber of Commerce breakfast in Burlington Monday, someone asked Gov. Peter Shumlin (D-Vt) why Vermont isn't doing the same thing.

"I know this might come as a surprise to some of you," Shumlin began, with more than a hint of sarcasm. "But I am not running for President of the United States. I know you're disappointed," he said, inciting laughter among the crowd of lawmakers and businesspeople. "I think our Governor to the West is," he said, referring to Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.)

It was clear by their "State of State" addresses last week: the Democratic governors don't share the same priorities.

Cuomo focused his speech on economy and jobs, frequently discussing the Start-Up NY plan, which gives tax credits to businesses.

Shumlin turned all his attention to the opiate problem plaguing Vermont.

Shumlin said Monday he has no plans to spend Vermont's money on an ad campaign to compete with New York for jobs.

"I'm not going to put up ads," he said. "And spend tons of loot offering tax incentives that cannibalize states."

He says New York's tax incentives will have to be paid for by the next generation.

"It's when the Governor's gone, and the next guy's gotta take the job...that you're stuck with it," he said.

We showed Shumlin's comments to UVM political science professor Garrison Nelson.

"He's right," Nelson said. "That's what happens. It's just kicking the can down a generation or so." He added: "He may not get a Christmas card this coming year from Governor Cuomo."

Nelson also pointed out New York is in dire straits when it comes to job growth; Vermont has the 5th lowest unemployment rate in the nation, but New York is way down at 35th.

Governor Shumlin admits Vermont also has much less money to work with than New York.

"Let's not envy things that we can't afford," Shumlin said.

Governor Cuomo's office declined to respond to Shumlin's remarks.
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