SOCIO-ECONOMIC GROWTH & REGULATORY EQUALITY

New York State ranks 47th of 50 on the Small Business Prosperity Index.  NYC is ranked dead last in the country for ease of starting a business, according to Thumbtack.  Arizona State’s Doing Business report reaches a similar conclusion, placing the Big Apple at 80 out of 81 U.S. cities for ease of doing business.

 

Small Business, Jobs, and the Economy: 

Let's face it. The regulatory regime of NYC favors the haves versus the have nots. Inequality is a system that keeps opportunity out of reach for most New Yorkers. It also makes NYC one of the most expensive places to start and maintain a business in the U.S. In NYC, you have to have money to make money. New York City is in competition for tax-paying businesses and jobs and must make itself more attractive going forward – the only sustainable way to jumpstart growth. This means both an external and an internal approach. Externally, we will encourage businesses and young talent to relocate to the City and internally, we will make it easier to start, maintain and operate a business within the City, as well as doing a better job cultivating our own talented young people (education and training!). This means eliminating regulatory inequality by getting rid of rules that are unnecessary and/or difficult to enforce. Counter-intuitively, to make NYC fiscally viable, we must lower the explicit and implicit taxes on NYC businesses and residents that currently elevate the costs of living and operating businesses here. This approach tears down barriers to entry for businesses and households. It broadens opportunities for all New Yorkers and begins the necessary steps toward knocking down a system that has consolidated wealth and power amongst an extremely small portion of the population. 


On top of that, we need to increase support for the arts and culture sector, along with nurturing the broader “creative economy", which includes young writers and graphic designers, and sector development diversified (e.g. “green collar” jobs) to reduce the City’s dependence on the FIRE (Finance, Insurance, Real Estate) industries. In fact, in the not-so-distant past, there had been efforts to advocate for the ICE sector (Intellectual, Educational and Cultural sector). 
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  • Reduce costs of establishing and doing business in NYC, allowing rents to fall to market levels and eliminating unnecessary and arbitrary regulations

  • Streamline (time and money) strictly necessary permitting and oversight processes.

  • Create tax holidays for certain goods and services

  • Focus on encouraging businesses to relocate to NYC by leveraging existing world class hospitals, institutions of higher learning, our busy port and local specialized and ethnic industries

  • Lower the cost of living here by beginning to dismantle the byzantine, arbitrary and overreaching regulatory and tax regime so a) the people who live here reduce their monthly bills for basic living expenses, allowing for the financial freedom that makes room for accumulating skills and taking risks and b) that young people begin to return to NYC to build a pipeline of talent that attracts employers

  • Support community-based micro-lenders and resources such as the Small Business Resource Network

  • Improve New York City's national small business friendliness ranking from the current #80 to the Top Ten in four years by appointing a Deputy Mayor for Small Business whose job it will be to roll out the red carpet for new businesses along with making it simpler and easier to operate a small business.

  • Among the Deputy Mayor's responsibiities will be to consolidate the small business oversight functions of all city agencies, to expand the Small Business First initiative and to utilize the Department of Small Business Services as a "one-stop-shop" point of contact.

 

Over the past decade, NYC issued one housing permit for every 3.9 jobs created – an incredible housing: jobs mismatch.  Over the prior decade, NYC added 3 housing units for each job created.  Under DeBlasio, housing creation is worse than in the Great Depression.

Housing:

We have a housing problem in New York City. Rent regulations are antiquated and need to be phased out in order for a small property owner to earn sufficient income to keep up with the costs of maintaining the property and not defaulting AND encourage development of less expensive housing.  At the same, time, the amount of affordable housing stock must be significantly increased to drive down both rents and the percentage of household income that goes towards rent. Ironically, the COVID-19 crisis provided a natural experiment that demonstrated the dynamics of a higher vacancy rate, with renters accessing lower cost housing and trading up for less expensive but larger or better-located apartments for their needs. Our laws and regulations must stop pitting small landlords against tenants, while luxury and commercial buildings watch as immune spectators with their legal resources and their economies of scale. We must acknowledge that, while protecting tenants is important, especially during a major crisis like COVID-19, neither the government nor the marketplace has suspended or will suspend the costs that a small property owner must bear. Further, tenants who game the system by avoiding payment of the rent or sublet at a higher profit margin than what is earned by the restrictions placed on the small property owner are a detriment to the reputation of honest, struggling tenants and to the good will of a good-faith property owner.

  • Reform the real estate tax system to make it fair and easy to understand

  • Advocate for amending or repealing the financial caps and other restrictions or limitations placed on building renovations and improvements

  • Eliminate antiquated Department of Buildings rules pertaining to renovations

  • Sell or lease empty City property at a deep discount to the private or non-profit sector

  • Prohibit City subsidies for residential buildings based on “financial apartheid” and “economic segregation” using “poor doors” 

  • Reduce carrying costs to drive rents downward

  • Remove all government-provided incentives for the development and construction of luxury housing

  • We support naturally affordable housing, creating more choice for residents by allowing market forces to operate.

  • Concentrate development around transit hubs, by loosening arcane zoning restrictions

 

Sanitation:

Since the time the Bloomberg Administration suspended and restored recycling, the percentage of recyclables separated from the rest of solid waste has not significantly changed.  New York City continues to recycle only about 20 percent of its garbage despite educational campaigns and fines.  If the City effectively recycled, then approximately 70 percent of solid waste can be diverted from landfills and reduce the increasing costs of trash removal to the City. 

  • Restore all cleaning and sanitation services to required levels
  • Restore the composting program in New York City and ensure residents are adequately educated about this program, carrying out “best practices” of other cities
  • Prohibit department of sanitation trucks from picking up garbage during rush hour for schools and businesses

  • Identify efficiencies while maintaining proper level of garbage pickups by the department of sanitation

  • Establish protocols where inspectors first warn and educate violators, while increasing penalties on frequent offender​

 
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Paid for by Sara Tirschwell for Mayor, Inc.