Special Report: Stay Or Go? - Part 1

Special Report: Stay Or Go? - Part 1

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People are packing up and leaving New York state, while others are deciding to settle here. 

It's the choice between stay or go. 7 News reporter Erin Bischoff explains why some people are leaving in part one of a special report.

Beth Comins and her husband are packing up their home in Adams and moving out of state and onto a new adventure.

"We're going to West Palm Beach, Florida," she said. 

The Comins are just two of many people leaving New York.

According to the most recent census data, more than 190,000 New Yorkers moved out of state between July 2016 and July 2017.

That brings the total number to more than a million people who have left since 2010. That's more people leaving New York than any other state in the nation.

So why are people leaving? For Comins, who's been a lifelong resident of Adams, it comes down to the long months of winter, which she says take a toll on a medical condition she has.

"It really is depressing with all the snow, people don't get out, you know you're stuck in  your home," she said. "That's one reason why it's time to go."

Another big reason: Comins says it's more expensive to live in New York.

"The property taxes are lower in Florida, the state sales tax is lower in Florida," she said. The electric is a lot lower in Florida."

She's right. According to Poltifact, New York's tax burden is among the highest in the United States.

It's a similar story for Gouverneur native Trudy Persons. She and her husband left Watertown three years ago and moved to Kannapolis, North Carolina, which is near Charlotte.

Persons says the winter weather was hard on an injury her husband has and says they were able to afford a decent house in North Carolina.

"Cost of heating and electricity and everything else kinda made the decision," she said.

Persons says it was the right decision. They're loving it. She says they enjoy the warmer weather. They are able to get out and do a lot more things than they were able to do in New York.

"It's just an amazing place," she said. "We can go to a park, you can go to a baseball game, concerts and plays and everything, within 10, 15 minutes of where I live."

But for some, the grass isn't always greener on the other side. For example, many who come to the north country for Fort Drum decide to stay. 

We'll hear their story in part two, which airs Wednesday.

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