Northern New York Newspapers
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NNY Living
Wed., Aug. 27
Serving the communities of Jefferson, St. Lawrence and Lewis counties, New York
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Leaving N.Y.

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A recent poll shows that 36 percent of New Yorkers younger than 30 are planning to leave the state.

Not only that, but 26 percent of all New Yorkers indicated they will depart in the next five years, according to the NY1/YNN-Marist survey. Sixty-seven percent of adults plan on staying and 6 percent are not sure.

Some young New Yorkers are planning their future in the Empire State: 60 percent, while 3 percent are uncertain.

The problem is stated by Marist pollster Lee Miringoff: "New Yorkers are feeling the financial squeeze on the home front. Right now, many young people do not see their future in New York state. Unchecked, this threatens to drain the state of the next generation."

Of those seeking to make a life outside New York, 26 percent hail from upstate, 33 percent are from the suburbs of New York City and 24 percent live in New York City.

The poll probed into the reasons people want to leave the state they have called home.

Sixty-two percent point to economic reasons such as lack of job opportunities, the high cost of living or taxes. Some 38 percent cite other motivations — desire to be closer to family, overcrowding, life quality, schools or retirement.

Yet it is significant that 77 percent view New York as an expensive place to live for the average family. The cost of living here is not very affordable, say 55 percent of respondents; 22 percent regard it as "not affordable at all."

There is more to the poll, but the messages are clear. More than one of three young people see a better future elsewhere, as do one of four adults.

Many of us take great pride in New York for a lot of reasons. But state leaders, representatives and concerned citizens must see what needs to change, what must improve and what must be created to reverse this exodus of New Yorkers, particularly the younger generation.

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