Bloomberg, Quinn Agree on Budget; Sales Tax Up, Luxury Taxes Out

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Mayor Bloomberg and city council speaker Christine Quinn announce that they have come to terms, and declare the $59.4 billion 2010 city budget balanced, despite an anticipated decline of nearly $5 billion in tax revenue (which tracks closely with what the IBO predicted in its report last month).

The city sales tax jumps a half-a-percentage-point jump in sales tax to 8.875, and tax exemptions on clothes over $110 and energy purchased from non-utility companies are repealed. Also, "loopholes" are closed. The city is going through with some promised business tax breaks, including reductions in the Unincorporated Business Tax agreed upon earlier and no new luxury taxes.

Firehouses, libraries and child care will be spared previously threatened cuts, and good news: the Mayor's bag tax is out.

But Bloomberg warned that "this may not be the last word on this year's budget" if the economy gets worse. Also there is the matter of an actual city council vote, but with the speaker lined up, that is expected to be no problem.

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