New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo talks about his upcoming meeting with President Donald Trump during a news conference in the Red Room at the state Capitol Monday, Feb. 11, 2019, in Albany, N.Y. New York pays more in taxes to the federal government than any other state. (AP Photo/Hans Pennink)

New York Gov. Cuomo to urge Trump to rethink tax changes

February 12, 2019 - 4:24 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo visited the White House on Tuesday to urge President Donald Trump to rethink a provision in the 2017 tax overhaul that Cuomo says is prompting a sharp decline in state revenues.

Democrat Cuomo met with the Republican president to discuss the $10,000 cap on the federal deduction for state and local taxes.

Cuomo said the cap is prompting wealthy residents to flee New York and contributing to a recent drop of more than $2 billion in tax receipts.

Trump has praised the tax changes but said recently he has heard it's causing problems for some New Yorkers. Residents in states like New York, New Jersey and California could see substantial increases in their federal tax bills this year because of the deduction cap.

But prospects for new tax legislation are weak, given the Republican majority in the Senate and concern over the potential for increasing the deficit without corresponding new revenue sources.

Michael Zona, a spokesman for Republicans on the Senate Finance Committee, said the committee won't be revisiting the SALT deduction changes under Republican Sen. Charles Grassley's leadership.

"It's ironic that the same Democrats who criticized the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for supposedly benefiting only the wealthy are now advocating for a change to the law that would primarily benefit the wealthy," Zona said.

Cuomo, who planned to return to New York Tuesday evening, said he was hopeful the cap could be repealed now that Democrats control the U.S. House.

"This is not an academic discussion, my friends. This is real life," Cuomo told reporters Monday when he announced the trip. "This changes the economic trajectory of the state. People are mobile. And they will go to a better tax environment."

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