Skip to main content

Bill by Ranzenhofer would reward employers who hire those getting jobless benefits

By Howard B. Owens

Sen. Mike Ranzenhofer (R-61) wants to give New York businesses that hire from the ranks of the unemployed a $3,000 tax credit.

Ranzenhofer announced his proposed legislation today in Batavia at the Genesee County Career Center on East Main Street.

"It's a win, win, win situation," Ranzehofer said. "It helps people who are looking for work. It's good for employers. But it's also good for the economy."

Under the proposal, New York businesses that hire a person currently drawing unemployment benefits will get a $3,000 tax break.

There are currently 300,000 people out of work, Ranzenhofer said, and among those drawing unemployment, they are getting checks averaging $314 per week. Razenhofer said his proposed tax credit will pay for itself in 10 weeks with cost savings on unemployment benefits.

Unemployment benefits can be drawn for two years.

Ranzenhofer also said that by putting more people back to work, those people will have more money to spend, generating more tax revenue for the state.

While the tax incentive itself may not spur some employers to hire -- challenged as they are by other expenses, from health insurance, taxes and the cost of equipment upgrades -- the tax credit may be just what it takes to get other businesses to add new positions.

"To do nothing and not give them this kind of incentive, when it doesn't cost us any money, is not a good thing," Ranzenhofer said.

While it would be better to lower the tax burden on New York businesses, Ranzenhofer said, "I don't see that happening this year."

Scott Gage, executive director of the jobs center, praised the legislation.

"This is going to be an opportunity for people who have retooled their skills during this economic downturn to be hired and maybe they would have got that opportunity if not for the resources created by this tax credit," Gage said.

Dave Olsen

On the surface, this sounds like a pretty good idea, hope it helps. I'm wondering though, did Ranzenhofer get a GPS for Christmas, so he could find out where Batavia is?

Feb 4, 2010, 8:00pm Permalink
Howard B. Owens

Dave, Ranzenhofer has a law office in Batavia.

Also, since his campaign, he's been pretty conscientious about paying attention to Batavia.

Feb 4, 2010, 8:02pm Permalink
Dave Olsen

OK, my apologies. I just never noticed him being here before, and don't hear a lot out of him. William, isn't this transferring some of the money we'd be paying to unemployment, and the rest then staying in the bank instead of paying out in unemployment. Not to mention a tax credit gets taken at the end of the year, instead of every week or 2, gaining the interest.

Feb 4, 2010, 8:26pm Permalink
Beth Kinsley

Is that an actual law office where you can actually walk in and be greeted by a real person? Their website shows two attorneys and seven offices and specifically calls Ranzenhofer "BUFFALO LAWYER MICHAEL H. RANZENHOFER" and his partner "BUFFALO ATTORNEY ROBERT FRIEDMAN". They probably occasionally meet with clients in their "Batavia Office" but I don't really consider that a "law office in Batavia".

Feb 4, 2010, 9:30pm Permalink
Howard B. Owens

There is (or was) an office on Main Street with his name on it. Whether he's ever in it, I don't know.

I've seen Ranzenhofer appear on the behalf of clients in County Court and Darien Town Court.

I know it is common practice for for Erie County attorneys to rent space in Batavia in order to receive "assigned counsel" status.

Either way, my only point is that Ranzenhofer is clearly familiar with Batavia.

Feb 4, 2010, 9:28pm Permalink
Beth Kinsley

You're right about the assigned counsel status Howard. When I used to work right where your office is there was an attorney who had an "office" next door so she could get assigned counsel and law guardian cases in Genesee County. Never saw her more than a few times in the years I was there.

Feb 4, 2010, 9:32pm Permalink

Authentically Local