Cuomo blasts local taxes: NY’ers have been “abused long enough”

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo stepped up his criticism of local governments today, saying that they need to do more to limit property taxes in New York.

Local governments and Cuomo have been battling since he took office in 2011 over his need to lower unfunded state mandates versus municipalities’ need to lower spending.

Cuomo McCall PatakiA tax commission formed by Cuomo recommended today that New Yorkers would have a two-year property-tax freeze if their schools and local governments stay within the property-tax cap limit of about 2 percent. In year two, the freeze would be in place if local governments also seek to consolidate services.

“There’s no pressure on governments to come up with these efficiencies, and what this commission is saying that there is an incentive or a pressure,” Cuomo told reporters after the commission’s report was released on Long Island.

Cuomo called it “a heck of an incentive.”

This year, 98 percent of schools and 77 percent of local governments stayed under the 2 percent property-tax cap. For 2014, the tax cap is set at 1.6 percent, based on the current rate of inflation.

Local governments and schools have criticized the property-tax cap since it took effect in 2011, and the state teacher’s union is suing to have it overturned.

The tax cap can be overrode with 60 percent of a vote of a governing board, or for schools it’s 60 percent of the public vote in May.

“Over the next two years, assuming that governments stay within that cap, they are not going to see an increase in any of their property taxes,” said former Gov. George Pataki, who co-chaired the commission.

Former state Comptroller Carl McCall said local governments and schools need to do more to control costs. McCall has been criticized for cutting pension contributions to zero for local governments in advance of his gubernatorial run in 2002 — a move that contributed to skyrocketing pension costs in recent years for schools and municipalities.

“All of the various levels of government have to find ways of working together, sharing services and finding ways of reducing the kind of burden that has been imposed on our citizens,” McCall said.

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14 Comments

  1. Yes so hopefully you will lose re-election and BTW… quit acting like you care you been in office going on 4 years and because it’s election time …you spew this BS

  2. the taxes in NY are absurd!!
    I live in a rural area and get NOTHING for the 6 THOUSAND dollars in taxes I must pay to keep “my” property.
    I see No services at all!, no water, no gas hookup, no garbage pick-up, nothing!
    I can NO longer afford health insurance and have no pension
    and I work HARD as a carpenter to make ends meet and always have
    but I am FORCED to pay for “government servants” free perks
    THAT I DO NOT HAVE thus making me a SLAVE
    I love this country but it needs to get back on a CONSTITUTIONAL footing, we are a Republic not a Democracy where people can vote MY property away by stealing it if I do not come up with the property tax EXTORTION FEE.
    I pray that Cuomo does something about this, I am tired of STRUGGLING so some FAT teacher or lazy government employee can retire at 55 with a benefit package that would have made a king envious … THIS IS NOT A FREE STATE , IT IS A SLAVE STATE

  3. Unfortunately his solutions only shift who’s going to pay and does nothing to address the underlying spending problem.

  4. And I’m sure Sen. George Latimer’s up in arms about this, he never voted for the cap & would vote to undo it just as fast as he’d support red light cameras for New Rochelle.

  5. Update from I ninety five:

    THE KNICKS STINK
    Blame Sen. George Latimer

    IT’S COLD AND IT SNOWED
    Blame Sen. George Latimer

    MY TOILET STOPPED UP
    Blame Sen. George Latimer

  6. But why can’t you tell us how he’s helped us?

    You know the over-taxed, over-worked and under-paid suburbanites?

    Not surprised that you don’t want to talk about issues.

  7. The problem in Westchester is that the tremendous savings from retiring civil service employees were used only to moderate rather than reduce taxes and then the balance used to hire Astorino campaign monkeys. The larger plan is to collect campaign funds, which will eventually be used to enrich himself. It seems unimaginable and ridiculous that Republicans would even consider running someone like Astorino for Governor-someone with no record of accomplishment at all? Not exactly the Rudy Giuliani who cleaned up NYC! Will the Republican Party please offer up a gubernatorial candidate who has a track record and credentials and who is serious about quality public administration and tax reduction?

  8. How would Astorino ever win anyway? He represents the highest taxing municipality in the US and has no record of doing anything about it. He has just used Westchester’s resources to further his own political ambitions. How could he stand up to a Governor who has made a big issue over taxes and passed the 2% tax cap?

  9. Astroino got relected on lies, lies, lies, and people who were gullible and who owe him a do-nothing Westchester County govt paycheck (and a huge pension) are the ones touting his small persona and bogus public appearances.