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NYS Issue Poll by Region

from January 2005 EmpirePage.com/Siena Research Institute Poll:

click here for Poll Data

Voters View Funding Public Education As Top Issue Overall in NYS for 2006; 50% of NYC Voters Say Education Top Issue While 33% of Suburban Voters Pick High Taxes

ALBANY, NY – (02/02/2006; 1600)(EIS) – Nearly one third of registered New York voters view the problem of funding public education as the most important issues to be addressed by the Governor and Legislature in 2006, according to a new poll conducted on behalf of The Empire Page by the Siena College Research Institute.

In response to the question, “Thinking about the following issues, which do you feel is the most important issue that the Governor and Legislature should address in 2006?” the results were:

  32% funding public education
  17% the high cost of local taxes
  16% reducing Medicaid costs
  15% creating new jobs
  13% rising energy costs
  3% controlling the costs of public pensions
  5% don’t know/no opinion

“Despite record levels of federal and state spending on education, voters from all backgrounds and all corners of the state ranked school funding as the issue they want the legislature and governor to address this year,” stated Peter G. Pollak, editor of The Empire Page. “This may suggest that while voters are indeed concerned about appropriate levels of education funding, they are also concerned about how the money is being spent.”

While 50 percent of NYC voters view education as the most important issue, 33 percent of NYC Suburb voters say the high cost of local taxes is most important. Registered Republicans, by 23 percent to 21 percent, also placed local taxes slightly above school funding whereas registered Democrats, Independents and Upstaters all view education as most critical.

Registered Democrats chose Medicaid as their second most important issue while Independents ranked local taxes second behind education.

While education was number one for all ethnic, age and religious groups, they did not agree on the second most crucial problem. Whites, 35-54 year olds, Catholic, Protestant and Jewish voters all picked local taxes as their number two issue; African Americans, Latinos and 18-34 year olds selected creating new jobs as their second choice, while seniors identified reducing Medicaid costs as number two.

“Creating new jobs did not come in as high as we anticipated,” Pollak stated. “Upstate – where the economy has been weaker than downstate, jobs only came in third behind education and reducing Medicaid costs as voters top priority. Statewide, jobs came in no higher than rising energy costs or Medicaid as voters first or second priority.”

The Empire Page (www.empirepage.com) is a news aggregation website that offers links by subscription to news stories, columns and editorials on New York State and national government and politics.

The Empire Page telephone poll of 621 registered voters was conducted Jan. 23-27 and has a sampling error margin of plus or minus 3.9 percentage points.

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