We're discussing taxes -- specifically, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC is a federal and state anti-poverty program that assists low income households by giving them extra cash based on their income. In Monroe County, approximately 60,000 households will receive an average of $4,000 between the federal and state EITC.

This hour, our guests help us understand what the EITC is, who it benefits, the pros and cons of the program, and what you need to know. In studio:

Last week, we heard from Congressman Tom Reed on why he wants the GOP tax plan to pass; today we hear from some who oppose it. Grad students in particular are concerned that it will balloon their expenses, blocking their career paths. And in Rochester, a bipartisan coalition of mayors and supervisors spoke about their concerns.

We get their perspective on who will be impacted, and how.

  • Scott O'Neil, University of Rochester graduate student
  • Helen Davies, University of Rochester graduate student
  • Bill Moehle, supervisor for the town of Brighton

Congress is debating a new tax plan that would bring changes for many American families. So how does it work? Who would benefit, and who would pay more? Our guests:

Malinda Ruit/RIT

It's no surprise: Taxpayers living in New York state are subject to some of the highest rates in the country.

No one pays more state and local income taxes out of a paycheck than New Yorkers do, according to recent data from the Tax Foundation. The state also ranks fourth overall in property tax collections.

With that, one might be quick to think that complaining about the state's tax burden is a given. But not always.

ALBANY (AP) A leading business advocacy organization is calling on New York state lawmakers to cut taxes for small businesses and fight large increases to the minimum wage in 2016.

The Business Council of New York State's agenda for 2016 also calls for big investments in roads, bridges and other infrastructure and stronger workforce development efforts.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has called on lawmakers to gradually increase the minimum wage from its current $9 an hour to $15.

That has concerned many business owners who said it will lead to higher prices and fewer jobs.

Connections: Innovation Friday - Taxes

Sep 25, 2015

Taxes. We hate paying them, but we’ll spend an hour talking about taxes! As we head towards the end of the federal fiscal year we’ll talk with Sheila Weinberg from the non-partisan Truth in Accounting about how every U.S. State including this one, is hiding pension and health care benefit debt from their financial reporting to the tune of more than $950 Billion. That all turns into taxpayer burden. Ever heard of the sinkhole states?

And then we’ll ask whether it’s possible to have FAIR taxation with Jill Gonzalez from Wallethub. Is it fuzzy math, or are we really able to work towards a fairer system of taxation.


Open enrollment for the second year of the Affordable Care Act is over. How many people enrolled and what does it mean for the future of the health law? What can we expect to happen to the cost of medical care going forward?

Also, this year, more than ever before, your health insurance could have a big effect on what you owe in taxes. We tackle all these issues with our panel:

New York lawmakers wanted Hollywood to make more movies in New York State, so they created the Film Tax Credit Program. Now they want more musicians to record their albums in New York, so they've created a similar bill. We'll examine what that would mean to musicians and bands, large and small, all across our region. The panel includes:

Good tax policy or bribe? The state recently mailed thousands of checks for $350 out to NY families. Who got the money? Why is it being mailed so close to Election Day if this was agreed upon nearly 18 months ago? We'll look at the politics, and we'll explore whether this is actually effective fiscal and economic policy. We'll hear (in pre-recorded comments) from Joe Morelle and Brian Kolb. Then we talk with our in-studio guests:

  • Erika Rosenberg, Associate Director of the Center for Governmental Research
  • Andrea Hickerson, RIT journalism professor

While the Fiscal Cliff deal passed by Congress at the turn of the New Year raised taxes on some of the wealthiest people in America, it left many tax breaks in place that benefit small businesses. That is, along as they take advantage of them.

Many of the research and development (R&D) incentives, or programs designed to help small businesses export their products go underutilized, says tax policy analyst Dean Zerbe.