Today's Poll: How would you vote on a measure aimed at dividing New York into two states?
Actually, as noted in the discussions on this issue, there are all sorts of good reasons to vote no, and very few good reasons to vote yes. Again, this bogus two-state proposal is nothing more than empty political pandering. Bread and circuses.
The polls are for entertainment purposes only. We already know the end results. Been there, done that - but still vote.
Those who find common cause with the progressive politics of downstate always try to paint the very sensible notion of splitting the state as unworkable.
"always try to paint the very sensible notion of splitting the state as unworkable."
I don't recall the argument being about unworkable. A barn door can fly if enough force is applied. Anything can be made workable. Sensible is another issue.
How about some actual numbers instead of groaning over the "liberal agenda"?
How about these numbers:
The top 10 counties in median real estate taxes in the United States as a percentage of median home value are, from 1 to 10: Monroe County, NY (2.89%); Niagara County, NY (2.87%); Wayne County, NY (2.78%); Chemung County, NY (2.61%); Chautauqua County, NY (2.61%); Erie County, NY (2.60%); Onondaga County, NY (2.50%); Camden County, NJ (2.50%); Steuben County, NY (2.49%); and Madison County, NY (2.43%).
The national median real estate taxes paid divided by the national median home value is 1.04 percent. Upstaters are nearly three times the national average across the board.
It's not about the "liberal agenda"--it's about trying to force urban-centric policies onto rural areas with no tax base.
We have very little in common with NYC. If we could split off and reset policies with an actual acknowledgement that there are rural areas in our state then we would be better off. We wouldn't need the fat tax revenues NYC provides.
So how would you work out US Senate representation or House of Reps representation? Distribution of Federal funds? Payment of Federal obligations?
Not just those danged lib'rals who question a possible split... Some folks look at a larger picture. And like It or not, libertarians, the Federal government is part of that larger picture.
The present government is not working for anybody. That's a truth beyond dispute. Any rationalization against tearing everything down and starting over is just that, a rationalization, not a real, cogent, sensible counterpoint.
I have yet to see *any* cogent, sensible or realistic arguments that favor upstate cessation. All I've seen is a heap of political grandstanding that is neither based in reality, nor in fact.
This argument has come up here before (back in November, for one) and there were many important questions and points raised that proponents of this political smoke and mirrors proposition have never bothered to address. Again, upstate NY is diverse. The GLOW region does not constitute all of Upstate nor all of Western NY; in fact, as someone who has lived in several different upstate towns and cities, I would say that this small region is rather unique in terms of its culture and ideology. The majority of voters in Upstate and Western NY are not nearly as conservative -- politically or culturally -- as are voters in Genesee County and in the surrounding rural counties. Furthermore, like it or not, the population centers in upstate NY are *still* politically progressive urban regions. Again, let's not forget, there are only about 215,000 people in the entire GLOW region.
One of the reasons for high property taxes in the western new york region is to many layers of government...Genesse County has less then 60,000 people but some very high taxes..The city of Batavia is a good example..We pay for city police ,county sheriffs and State troopers....We also pay for DPW to plow our roads and we also pay for a county dept. to plow and the state DOT...We also pay for a school district that could be managed better on a county wide basis such as BOCES is..None of this is mandated by the state......Splitting the state in half will do nothing to stream line the layers of fat in Genessee county..It would probably create more.....This is just a feel good measure that will go no where. It is just more of Mr.Hawley's bills that nothing will ever becomes of it..Is there any bill or law that he proposed that ever became law.?.
We also get revenue from NYC & its suburbs where will revenue come from? What is the cost of restructuring? What is the cost of maintaining a new structure? Sure Albany doesn't currently work for all of us, but is forming a new state the only answer? Or just the answer that "feels good" like mentioned above?
During debates about separation, though, I do hear many jabs at the "liberal agenda". As I recall the press release prompting this even contained a few. It does not appear to be simple economics.
"So how would you work out US Senate representation or House of Reps representation? Distribution of Federal funds? Payment of Federal obligations?"
Your question infers that we are represented now and have true input and is thus flawed.
Emma, although I disagree with you, your points are supportive of a referendum on the subject.
Given the overwhelming number of downstate liberals, I believe sentiment is strong enough in ALL western NY communities to approve separation.
BTW, your assertion that the GLOW region is unique in the idea of severing our ties with downstate is just plain wrong. Apparently you are not aware of the southern tier counties movement to completely secede and align themselves with PA..
Jennifer, the exorbitant taxes we suffer due to downstate FAR outweighs any - IF any - benefit we may get from them.
Please cite examples of the benefits you mention.
I’m curious about the logistics...
1. Will you be willing to have your tax money go for new buildings to house the center of this new state's government?
2. The New York State Thruway runs through the center of your new state. Will your new taxes cover the cost of maintaining this highway?
3. New York State has treaties with Canada and Native Americans. Are you prepared to spend the new tax money on rewriting these treaties?
4. Are you willing to have your new tax money maintain the infrastructure - roads and bridges?
5. Will your new tax money cover the cost of a National Guard? The NYS Troopers will no longer be our law enforcement agency. How much of the new tax revenue will it cost to form a new agency? What about the prisons, now under the old NYS? Will you close them?
6. Which agencies will be formed to make your new state operate?
7. What happens to the pensions of retired employees from the old NYS?
8. We will no longer have a NYS University system. Will you allow your new tax revenue form a new university system throughout the new state?
9. There are NYS parks in your new state. Are you willing to have your new tax revenue maintain them?
10. The NYS Veterans' Home will be no more. Are you willing to have your new tax revenue maintain the facility here in Batavia?
The list goes on and on. All good to just ignore the logical, cogent, sensible reasons why separation is the most illogical suggestion. What is scary is the hoard of folks who will follow without ever thinking the process through.
Bob - as cute as you were trying to be with your response, you failed to answer the question....even in jest (cue "jokers in Albany" joke)...
It is a serious and technical question. The House of Reps could be pretty straight-forward: the state of NYC and the state of TNPoNY (The Nice Part of New York) split the existing Reps either by current districts or by population. The Senate is a different situation.... Each state gets 2 Senators. Do you think California, Texas, or Florida would approve watering down their representation in the Senate by giving NY two more Senators? Would NY give two thumbs up to California splitting into 4 or 5 states, as one crackpot out there suggests? Heck - I'm in North Carolina and I'm against any state from splitting.
This article from 2010 outlines the benefits we get. http://www.rockinst.org/observations/wardr/2011-12-giving_getting.aspx
What does this new utopian state look like? How will things be funded? Which programs and services will stay (if any), which will go?
What is the cost benefit of seceding?
How does one build a new state? Are there states that have already split? Va/WV perhaps? How did that work out?
This discussion is interesting, but it seems there are a lot of questions and very few concrete answers.
What I would like to see is the senate allocated as 1 senator per county sortalike the US Senate. Also allowing both the assembly and senate to caucus and vote regionally regardless of party affiliation. Balancing the power more fairly would help a lot. I also agree with Mark, we are own enemy at times
Bea, Jennifer Keys and Tim Miller all make excellent points and they raise very important questions -- questions that I've seen raised before when this issue has come up in this forum... questions which NOBODY in the pro-secession camp has ever bothered to attempt to answer adequately. Again, the notion that WE financially support New York City is simply false. The truth, in fact, is quite the opposite, as Jennifer has demonstrated.
As for the "Pennsylvania/Southern Tier" secession question... I grew up in the Southern Tier; I travel there often, and I have many friends and family members there. Any talk of secession down there is FAR from being any type of growing mainstream movement! Go anywhere and you will find small pockets of people who are pushing for all sorts of fringe notions; that doesn't make any of it realistic or even widely supported. In most camps, even in the Southern Tier, the whole notion of secession is viewed as a lot of sturm und drang -- interesting, if rather crazy, political theater that will never actually come to be.
Jennifer is right. This is all about dishing up a heaping helping of political red meat for angry, beleaguered and outnumbered conservatives and right-leaning Libertarian types. It has nothing to do with good or sensible governance. If it did, Mr. Hawley would not need to employ inflammatory and divisive rhetoric -- nor would he have to resort to outright mendacity in his regular press releases about this issue.
1) No new buildings are needed. The center of our government here in NY is in Albany, not NYC. It is they who will be needing new buildings.
2) The NYS thruway, is cared for with, and by the money they collect in tolls.
3) Treaties will be whats called "grandfathered in" Meaning that they will remain the same the only thing changing is the name of the entity you have the agreement with. This is standard.
5) The National Guard is a Federal entity. The National Guard of the United States,is part of the reserve components of the United States Armed Forces. Hence the word "National" in its name.
6) Once more, all these agencies are in place already, at your local dmv, your local highway department, and your department of public works. They become the respective property of the new states they are in.
7) What happens to the pensions of retired employees from the old NYS? Most pensions are controlled by financial institutions not the state. The rest are "grandfathered in"
8)Did the universities VANISH? The buildings dematerialize? The only thing that changes is the title at the top of your degree "University of the state of New Erie" for example
9)Yes, the infrastructure and personnel for this are already in place. The only thing that changes is the letterhead on your paychecks.
10)Did the Veterans Home VANISH? The buildings dematerialize? the infrastructure and personnel for this are already in place.
Almost NONE of the things you said have any actual substance to them as issues we would encounter. Its astounding to me that you dont see it. Let me make it nice and simple.
Everything stays the same. The name on some things change. Taxes and policies in our RURAL area come into line with our RURAL needs. It doesnt matter to me if taxes go up or down, quality of life will improve because the needs of our community WILL BE BEING DECIDED UPON BY MEMBERS OF OUR COMMUNITY, Not someone who has never seen a cow except on tv.
The populous portions of upstate and Western NY are NOT rural. Land mass does NOT equal population in this state, unless, of course, only Genesee County and her rural counterparts are planning to secede from the rest of the state? Is this to be solely a RURAL state -- or is all of *Upstate* NY supposed to secede? If it's the later, the vast majority of the population here will still NOT be located in rural regions. Indeed, the population in the state will still be primarily urban. That being the case, under the logic that you employ, why should those more populous *urban* areas be forced to submit to rule by the *rural* areas? Frankly, I find it ludicrous to suggest that states should only be made up of either rural or urban regions. Show me a state where that sort of clean separation takes place. I mean, seriously.
And this is all a lot more complicated (and expensive!) than merely determining where the physical buildings and state offices will be located. To pretend otherwise is simply naive. How, for instance, do you plan to support educational *quality* within the large portion of the SUNY system that exists *upstate* without the huge influx of downstate money that currently supports said system?
I'm sorry, but the needs, the politics and the culture of upstate NY are NOT solely rural.
Christopher, it isn't that easy.
Every existing facility you claim will just continue to operate will have to be purchased from the former owner, the State of New York. Do you think they are just going to hand them over free of charge?
Every person who worked in and for those agencies will not just automtiatically become employees of the new state. Contract negotiations are needed. You just don't change the name of the state on the paycheck.
Treaties and International agreements just don't get 'grandfathered in'. Those treaties and international agreements are between the State of NY and the different entities.
The new state will have negotiate their own agreements and treaties.
The various agencies that issue licenses will have to function under new laws, written by the new governing body.
The NYS thruway will have to be purchased by the new state. NYS won't just give it as a gift. State parks will have to be purchased. Nothing is free. Oh, and don't forget, we have to purchase the Erie Canal too.
As far as rural vs urban. Even in your new state you will have major urban areas. This will not become a vast wilderness or final frontier.
It's an old song that goes on and on and on....it will not change, and we need to accept that our region's strong right leaning majority is a minority in the big picture. I don't think this talk would exist if we were more willing to work together, through our differences.
BTW, I'd like to see NYS fix the effing thruway. They are going to blame the crappy condition on the winter , but truth is, they sucked before this winter. If they can allocate $6 billion to replace a bridge I'll never see in my life, (tappan zee) they could at least pay attention to western NY, which has a substantial number of bridges needing to be replaced.
I guess she just doesnt get it. In this transaction NYS is not some 3rd party we have to buy things from. The infrastructure in the state belongs to the people of the state. There IS NOT some third party called NYS that is going to sell things to Western NY and NYC.
Nothing new need be created. All these things exist and become the property of the respective states they are in. NYS CANNOT sell things to us, because WE ARE NYS. Your acting like there is going to be 3 states. The original NYS, a new western state, and a NYC state. This is not the case. Only two states. Both of which get to keep everything infrastructure related inside their borders when they are drawn.
Please dont vote or comment on this issue if you cannot even comprehend that NYS is not going to SELL us anything. WE ARE NYS.
Ahh i get it, you are one of those people that like to muddy the waters with nonsense when they dont have a concrete argument.
I repeat NYS is not a 3rd party that is going to sell things to the other 2 new states.
I can't help but think that us flyover folks will do quite well on the revenues we will extract from the anthill for warehousing their felons. It's not like they are going to build new prisons next to Prince Andwew's compound in Westchetew to house their felons.
The divorce will require work, but all good things do.
As I have pointed out: Our cities will be much better off being THE LINE in Albany, not the redheaded stepchildren they are now. Rural and urban upstaters would both benefit immensely from divorce.
Possession is 9/10 of the law. Habit is custom. Where the heck else do you think they would send their felons? The state assembly and senate in Albany? Oh, wait... That is way too real. Sorry.
"is it even legal to house another states inmates without the inmates consent?"
You seriously think inmates have to consent on where they are incarcerated? Like this is no different than deciding on which hotel to vacation at?