On a conference call today on increasing major charitable giving, Mayor Bloomberg and Investor Warren Buffett were asked what they thought about New York's new law reducing tax deductions on donations made by wealthy philanthropists.
“The law is about as ill-considered a piece of legislation as I can think of,” said Bloomberg. “For a small amount of incremental revenue to the state, they will discourage, consciously or subconsciously others from doing it, giving money.”
Bloomberg said it’s not likely that other legislatures will follow New York's lead on this issue since “it’s really hard to see how other states can be so stupid. Hopefully we’re the only one."
But among philanthropists who’ve agreed to join Buffett’s effort to increase their giving, “not one has talked to me about taxes,” Buffett said. He added, “Anybody that’s entitled to take a tax deduction takes it, but I think the motivation [for giving] goes far beyond taxes.”