While New York state lawmakers are debating where to cut health care, there are tax breaks in the state budget for people who buy private jets and luxury yachts.

The budget watchdog group Reinvent Albany calls these among the most obscene tax breaks in New York’s budget history.

“For us, the budget is about supporting and encouraging basic principles like acting for the many, not the few, which you’d think would be pretty uncontroversial,” John Kaehny, executive director of the group Reinvent Albany told Capital Tonight. 

Reinvent Albany and other good government groups have urged lawmakers to promote the idea of a healthy democracy that’s beneficial to the broadest number of people rather than the richest or the loudest special interests.

Last year, lobbyists spent over $300 million lobbying New York state lawmakers.

“Sometimes we do feel we’re astronauts on Planet Albany,” Kaehny said. “Because the reality is, that the budget process is massively dominated by special interests of all kinds that are really looking to feed at the public trough.”

This year, the state Senate’s one-house budget includes several pieces of legislation that Reinvent Albany supports including two bills that would end the tax break for private jets and the tax break for private luxury yachts.

The budget is due on April 1, but the governor signed an extender on Thursday that will keep the government funded through April 4.