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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced yesterday that the FY 2021 Executive Budget includes an expansion of the current income exclusion for farmers and sole proprietors and an expansion of the refundability of the investment tax credit so that more farming businesses can qualify.
“Agriculture remains a key industry in New York and we are committed to helping the farmers who help all of us put food on the table,” Governor Cuomo said. “These businesses are economic engines for their local communities, and with these key reforms, we are investing in a stronger Empire State for all.”
The Executive Budget triples the existing sole proprietor and farm business income AGI subtraction from 5 percent to 15 percent. This will further uplift small businesses that have an annual income of $250,000 or less and are paying taxes through personal income tax. The Budget also expands the refundability of the investment tax credit, which is currently offered only to new businesses, so that all taxpayers whose primary source of income is from farming operations can qualify, allowing them to receive the full benefit of their credits earned.
Building on these important tax benefits, the Budget continues to support the agricultural industry at significant levels through local assistance funding. The Governor has proposed a budget of $27.4 million to ensure the future of New York State agriculture.
This funding is integral to the success of a number of programs that provide specialized technical assistance, research, agricultural education, workforce development, and marketing initiatives for the agricultural community. These include the NY FFA, Pro-Dairy, commodity-specific research and development at Cornell, funding for the Farm-to-School program, and more.
The Executive Budget would raise the spending threshold for school districts procuring local food for breakfast and lunch through the federal Child Nutrition Programs. This change will give schools more flexibility in realizing the Governor’s goal for schools to source 30 percent of their menu items from local farms as part of the No Student Goes Hungry initiative.