Gov Paterson Offers To Meet With Senecas

03.04.09 | FL News Team

Governor David Paterson is offering to meet with leaders of the Seneca Nation to discuss taxing non-Indian cigarette sales. A sit-down is scheduled for this afternoon in Amherst.

The two sides have been wrangling since Paterson signed a law to begin collecting the taxes. Yesterday Paterson lashed out at the Senecas, saying they have not been cooperative and did not want to talk.

The Governor says the tax-free cigarettes cost the state about one billion dollars in revenues and hurt small businesses who are required to pay taxes. The Senecas say collecting taxes would violate treaties dating back hundreds of years.