As she kicks off her first legislative session as Governor, and with the hopes of wining a full term in the fall, Kathy Hochul delivered the State of the State a New York facing pandemic fatigue and economic anxiety. To that end, Governor Hochul focused on laying out her road map to help revitalize New York’s small businesses and the middle class.
The plan will provide $100 million in tax relief for 195,000 small businesses through increasing a tax return adjustment to reduce small businesses’ gross business income. The plan will also accelerate the implementation of $1.2 billion in New York’s existing Middle Class Tax Cut for 6 million New Yorkers which first began to be implemented in 2018 and establish a $1 billion property tax rebate program to put money back into the pockets of more than 2 million New Yorkers who have had to endure rising costs as the pandemic has progressed.
Another key goal outlined in the State of the State is to strengthen New York’s workforce and help grow the economy. This seven-pronged initiative reimagines and overhauls New York’s approach to workforce development by focusing on regional needs, creating, and expanding access to career services and the jobs of tomorrow, and identifying innovative ways to build the workforce of the future.
Employers in some high-demand industries have a seen a surge in open positions, while those in some essential sectors are struggling to retain and recruit top talent. To advance meaningful job opportunities and support industries across the State, New York will overhaul its approach to workforce development, while at the same time invest in a full spectrum of programs to unlock career opportunities.
Managed by Empire State Development and administered through the Regional Economic Development Councils in conjunction with the Department of Labor, the State University of New York and the City University of New York, the state will create the Office of Workforce and Economic Development.
An interesting plan to strengthen workforce development while also tackling criminal justice reform is the Jails to Jobs initiative, which aims to improve re-entry into the workforce and reduce recidivism by focusing on connecting previously incarcerated individuals with education, resources, and opportunities for job placement.