Here is a look at five ways President Trump and his administration have potentially impacted Long Island in his first year in office.
During a speech in Brentwood, President Donald Trump vowed to destroy the MS-13 street gang, which he called a “vile criminal cartel.” Suffolk police were later awarded a $500,000 federal grant to fight MS-13, and federal officials said 38 gang members from Long Island were among those arrested in a crackdown this past fall. Authorities also said that 14 Long Island homicides in 2017 are believed to be MS-13 related.
State and local tax deduction
The tax legislation Trump signed into law at the end of 2017 eliminated the full deduction for state and local property taxes, capping them at $10,000. That won’t cover many Long Islanders’ property taxes – the average property tax bills were $11,232 in Nassau County and $9,333 in Suffolk County in 2016, according to an Attom Data Solutions analysis. If the capping on taxes doesn’t impact taxpayers, most will see a decrease in their taxes due to a doubling of the standard deduction.
Long Island’s many small businesses and investors are expected to benefit from a 20 percent deduction for pass-through income. The top corporate rate will also be cut to 21 percent from 35 percent.
Healthcare mandate repealed
The tax law included the repeal of Obamacare’s individual mandate for health insurance, beginning in 2019. The Congressional Budget Office estimated it would leave 4 million more people without health insurance in 2019 and 13 million in 2027, as well as raise premiums about 10 percent a year most years. There are no specific numbers on how many Long Islanders would be impacted by the change.
The Trump administration decided that Temporary Protected Status for Salvadoran, Haitian and Nicaraguan immigrants will end in 2019. More than 14,700 Salvadorans on Long Island have TPS, according to Nassau and Suffolk county executives. Long Island figures are not available for Haitians and Nicaraguans, but about 9,400 Haitians in the New York and New Jersey metro area have the status, according to estimates by the Immigrant Legal Resource Center.
If Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, a program that shields young immigrants known as Dreamers from deportation, ends, thousands could be affected on Long Island over about the next two years when their DACA benefits expire. About 14,000 Dreamers in Nassau and Suffolk counties – who were brought to or stayed in the United States illegally as children – were eligible for the program when it was first rolled out, according to the Migration Policy Institute. A judge has temporarily blocked the administration’s decision to end DACA – which has a March expiration date, though Congress could reach an immigration deal – and recipients’ renewal requests are again being accepted.
The Trump administration plans to open nearly all coastal U.S. waters for oil and gas drilling. Currently, no plans have been announced to begin offshore drilling off Long Island's coast.
With The Associated Press and Newsday.com staff