For many New Yorkers, there's no bigger issue is this year's gubernatorial race than the economy. In the first report in his "On The Issues" series, NY1's Josh Robin examines what Andrew Cuomo and Carl Paladino say they'll do if elected.
On one thing, both Andrew Cuomo and Carl Paladino agree.
"Job one for the governor is creating jobs," says Cuomo.
"Four letters," says Paladino. "J-O-B-S."
New York State shed nearly 300,000 jobs since April 2008, and the Republican candidate says business won't grow until taxes are tamed and government is slimmed.
Paladino wants to slash the state budget by one fifth, and cut personal income taxes by 10 percent.
He also wants to eliminate some businesses taxes and freeze teachers' salaries. To pay for it, he'll gut Medicaid, shutter agencies like the MTA, and move workers away from guaranteed pensions.
Experts say his Medicaid proposals would strand millions of New York's neediest, and trigger major job losses in the health care field. Some also say it would break federal law.
But Paladino is insistent.
"We have this bloated, out-of-control government," he says. "137 billion dollars for 19 million people."
And those numbers don't even include a deficit approaching $8 billion, which Paladino says his cuts will cover.
Cuomo, however, says the deficit is too big for tax cuts, at least now. In fact, he says fee increases should still be left on the table.
"Theoretically, if the deficit wasn't as high, could you theoretically find room to cut taxes? Yes," Cuomo says, "But nobody is projecting that at this point."
He says tax cuts are only one way to grow business. There's also workers comp reform and lower energy costs.
The Democrat also proposes holding state spending to inflation levels; giving a $3,000 tax credit to firms who hire those who have been unemployed for two months or more; and creating regional public-private councils.
Cuomo also want to cut government by 20 percent, but won't say where.
For both candidates, getting much of this done will require the help of the legislature. Both of them blast lawmakers as dysfunctional, but unlike Cuomo, Paladino says he hasn't decided if he's even going to work with Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver.