Local pols help push for income and sales tax postponement

BOROUGHWIDE– With the U.S. government’s announcement that it will postpone the April 15 tax payment deadline, a group of local lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have signed onto a letter calling for a similar income tax postponement on a state level.

On Tuesday, March 17 the federal government announced that it would postpone the April 15 tax deadline for 90 days for individuals earning $1 million or less and businesses earning $10 million or less.

As a result, Americans are being a granted three-month reprieve to pay their 2019 income-tax bills in order to help relieve the economic burden they are experiencing during the coronavirus pandemic.

Local pols call for income tax postponement

Also on March 17, Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis, a Republican whose district includes parts of southern Brooklyn and Staten Island, sent a letter to Gov. Cuomo urging postponement of the April 15 tax deadline. The letter was co-signed by Republican state Sen. Andrew Lanza and City Councilmember Steven Matteo along with Democratic U.S. Rep Max Rose.

“During this time of uncertainty and fear, we must do everything we can to alleviate any extra stress or burdens and prioritize the health of New York families. We believe these extensions will provide more stability and a level of certainty to residents and businesses, so they can focus on what matters most, their loved ones, neighbors and employees,” the elected officials wrote.

AP Photo / Mark Lennihan, File
1040 Individual Income Tax Return form.

We must recognize economic hardship

The joint letter went on to say, “While we work diligently to contain the coronavirus, we also must recognize the economic hardship this outbreak is creating for most New Yorkers. I urge Gov. Cuomo to authorize an extension for residents and businesses to submit their income tax returns similar to what President Trump has done at the federal level.”

Malliotakis explained that federal taxes still have be filed by April 15, but the postponement applies to any monies owed to the government. Regarding the state taxes, the lawmakers are pushing for a postponement of both filing and payment.

She also said that she had been speaking with the governor’s office regularly about this issue.

“I’m hoping they will announce today that state income tax will be postponed and also that there will be a pause on the sales tax that’s due on Friday for the businesses like bars and restaurants that have been forced to shut and lay off employees,” Malliotakis told this paper.

“And hopefully that will allow them to pay some employees who have rents and mortgages to pay. It’s a matter of survival,” she added.

Rose said that local businesses were struggling and needed further assistance. “The one thing that’s clear from all of my conversations with small business leaders, including today with the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, is that our businesses and their workers can’t weather this storm alone,” Rose told this paper on Tuesday.

“I have all the confidence in the world that our community will band together to send our small businesses roaring back once it is safe to do so. But until then, they have enough on their plates, and we need to get them some relief by postponing these tax payments,” Rose added.

George Calivis, office manager at Smart Tax at 8527 Third Ave. in Bay Ridge said that it would certainly be a big help.

“Instead of having to worry about paying taxes, they could worry about paying bills,” Calivis told this paper. “A lot of people are coming in to do their taxes just so they can find out if they owe and try to budget it in time. And if they’re laid off from work, it really makes a difference,” he added.

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