It was a wild scene in the Well of the Legislative Office Building in Albany today, when a rally to support a property-tax cap quickly devolved into a back-and-forth shouting match when groups supporting a “circuit breaker” approach crashed the party.
As Assembly Republican Leader Brian Kolb spoke in support of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposal to cap property taxes at 2 percent, circuit-breaker supporters began chanting, “Tax the rich!”
After the rally wrapped up, the two sides converged on the Well, arguing their case — at times, loudly and inches apart from each other — as television cameras rolled and reporters snapped photos.
Kolb brushed off the rally crashers, saying that the majority of New York wants a tax cap. A circuit breaker would tie tax relief to income levels.
“You have to look at the people doing the screaming as a small group of people,” Kolb said after the rally. “The people that want a tax-cap are taxpayers who are home working, trying to raise a family.”
Ron Deutsch, executive director of New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness, said the circuit-breaker approach is the choice of the people.
“The reality is what the governor is talking about increasing taxes for people on an annual basis,” Deutsch said. “So if I can’t afford my property taxes now, what good is a tax cap going to do me? Only a circuit breaker would help me in that situation.”