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Assembly Speaker Says Tax Increase May Be Necessary

Albany, NY – The ongoing state fiscal crisis will likely mean tax increases.

Assembly speaker Sheldon Silver, in a New York City television interview Sunday, said revenue enhancements in the form of tax hikes and fees will be necessary to help deal with a projected $10 billion budget deficit.

But State Business Council spokesman Matthew Maguire said raising taxes didn't work during the last recession ten years ago.

"In the early 1990s, the nation was in a recession. At that time, New York succumbed to the call of higher taxes to boost revenues," Maguire said. "It backfired, as it always does.

"A state that lost a quarter-of-a-million jobs during the recession lost another quarter-of-a-million jobs after the recession was over for the rest of the nation."

Governor Pataki has offered no specifics so far on how he plans to close the budget deficit. All he has said so far is that he is ruling nothing out, including a tax increase.

WBFO will present live coverage of the Governor Pataki's state of the state address Wednesday afternoon at 1:00.