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41 percent in suburbs expect tax refunds

Tax documents

Tax documents Photo Credit: Newsday

The number of taxpayers on Long Island and in the other New York City suburbs receiving an income tax refund this year or not is nearly split, according to a poll released Monday.

The Siena College Research Institute found 41 percent of suburban taxpayers either have or expect to receive a refund on their personal income taxes, which are due today.

Forty-two percent do not expect a refund. Seventeen percent did not know or refused to answer.

Significantly more taxpayers in New York City, 55 percent, and upstate, 58 percent, either have or expect to get a refund.

Among those with refunds in the suburbs, 63 percent plan to use the money to pay bills while about 25 percent will put it in a savings account either for use in an emergency or retirement. A further 20 percent plan to use the funds for vacation or other leisure activity.

The trend was similar in New York City and statewide.

The uses of refunds aren’t surprising “with so many New Yorkers continuing to feel the pinch of a difficult economy,” said pollster Don Levy.

Asked about their economic situation, only 17 percent of suburbanites said they were better off than a year ago. Forty-seven said they were worse off and 35 percent said conditions were the same.

In terms of the future, 37 percent of suburban residents expected their economic situation to remain the same and 35 percent said to improve. Twenty-three percent said conditions would worsen.

These results mirrored the statewide numbers.

The poll of 811 residents, conducted March 28 to 31 and April 4 to 7 and April 10, has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.

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