Survey faults State's business climate

Posted at: 05/08/2013 6:08 PM
Updated at: 05/09/2013 10:55 AM
By: Beth Wurtmann

Photo: AP

ALBANY - One of the commercials that New York State has been running in parts of the country is voiced by actor Robert De Niro, spreading the message that New York is a great place to do business.

"Today there's a new New York State, one that's working to attract businesses and creates jobs," De Niro says in the ad.

But a new survey finds more than 700 chief executive officers disagree. Polled by the website ChiefExecutive.net, CEOs were asked to rate states based on taxation and regulation, quality of workforce and living environment.

New York came in second from last at No. 49. Only California was graded worse.

"This is all about New York open for business. This is all about jobs, jobs, jobs. This is all about getting dollars and tax revenues in our state," said Gov. Andrew Cuomo at a news conference in May 2012.

While the Cuomo administration has been aggressively trying to turn the business climate around, the survey found, "Gov. Cuomo seems to be less concerned now about business-friendliness."

The governor's press office discounted the findings, saying New York State has more private sector jobs than any time in history, over 7.4 million.

A spokesman told NewsChannel 13 there's clear evidence that many other CEOs are investing in New York, naming the Capital Region's Tech Valley growth as a prime example. He also said there's an advertisement running in Buffalo in which billionaire Warren Buffet compliments the business climate in the state.

The survey found the top three best states for doing business are Texas, Florida and North Carolina.