Skelos Looks To Revive Property Tax Rebate; Institute Tax Cap
And you thought there was no money left in Albany to be doled out?
Ha! Have you forgotten this is an election year, with millions to be spent defending Senate and Assembly seats, but not quite as many cents to be spent on aid to education, health care, or transportation?
Hey, we like getting a check in the mail as much as the next fella, but where's the money coming from, but for the other pocket NYS has its hand in?
Savings from the tax cap? What savings? First off, a cap is not a cut. It simply reduces the rate of property tax escalation. School districts will still need the funding (after all, upwards of 80% of most school budgets are fixed/contractual costs), and if it isn't coming from the State as aid, or from homeowners as a tax levy, where's it coming from? More borrowing?
We know. The soda tax.
Yes. Eliminate unfunded mandates (and tell the feds to do likewise). But don't just put a Band-Aid on the severed artery known as the school property tax. Actually fix the problem (most of which stems from Albany), starting with the outdated and virtually incomprehensible State Aid formulae, responsible, in great measure, for the inequity of and disparity in school funding, and continuing on to the very way we finance schools here in New York, through a regressive property tax.
What's that you say? You'll pay for the property tax cap by capping State spending?
Whoa! Look out the window, folks. There goes another flying pig...
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And now, a message from NYS Senator Dean Skelos:
This past week I announced a straightforward, common sense plan that would provide a property tax rebate for every middle class family.
This three-part plan includes:
1. PROPERTY TAX REBATES: Homeowners would receive a property tax relief check equal to their 2008 STAR property tax rebate or the amount calculated under a new "circuit breaker" tax credit, whichever is higher.
2. CAP ON PROPERTY TAXES: There would be a cap on property taxes that would finally put the brakes on runaway tax increases.
3. REDUCE COSTS FOR SCHOOL DISTRICTS THAT DRIVE UP TAXES: A permanent ban on all unfunded mandates, along with implementation of new reforms at the State Education Department to keep costs down.
My three-part plan would be paid for with savings generated from passage of a cap on State spending. This comprehensive package would usher in a new era of economic freedom for hard-working middle class families.
As always, I will continue to keep you posted on my progress.
Very Truly Yours,
Dean G. Skelos
Senator - 9th District
P.S. If you would like to read more about my plan to restore your rebate check and lower your property taxes, click here.
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The latest: Former Governor George Pataki endorses Rick Lazio for Governor. Now that's heartening. Peter King endorses Lazio, too. [Come on. We need one more Stooge in that picture. Peter Schmitt. Step up!] What next, former Governor Mario Cuomo endorsing Andrew Cuomo for Governor?
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In the wings: A fresh, new look for Nassau County's website ushers in the Mangano Plan.