Friday, August 22, 2008


This recent Tuesday, something wonderful happened in Albany. Yes, on occasion, something that touches the common citizen is considered and acted on. It involves your property taxes and public education.

There has been a continuous cry for help from New Yorkers aimed at our representatives to find a more equitable way to fund our schools. Well, we got the message to Albany.

The State Assembly rejected the 'tax cap' gimmick from the Senate, and instead passed a bill that would give immediate property tax relief to middle class working families while maintaining school funding.

You’ve heard about the “circuit breaker” proposal? No? Those of us who either thrive on politics or are responsible for the municipal operations of any town or city, follow such issues as if they were our own.

The Assembly's bill would establish what's called the 'circuit breaker.' It delivers a targeted property tax cut based on family income, and pays for it by modestly rolling back income tax giveaways for the rich.

Now the fight moves to the State Senate, still controlled by the Republicans, who talk big about property tax relief but haven't said whether they'll even bring the Assembly's bi-partisan "circuit breaker" bill up for a vote.

I wonder if our Senator Bill Larkin is willing to consider the needs of his middle income families in Orange and Ulster County. Will he ask Skelos to bring the ‘circuit breaker” bill out to the floor? Don’t hold your breath.

His opponent, Larry Delarose (seen here with Alderman Hoffay) is well aware of the affect of New York taxes on the average household.
Delarose said he is proud of the Assembly’s swift action as we head into the most fiscally painful winter we’ve seen in decades.

New York faces tremendous challenges in both job creation and educated youth retention. The “Circuit Breaker” concept is a good small step.

In an email, Dan Cantor of the WFP explains: To pay for the circuit breaker responsibly, the Assembly's bill asks the wealthiest New Yorkers, who've seen the lion's share of tax cuts, to contribute a little bit more. Those earning more than $1 million a year would see their income tax rate rise 1%. Make more than $5 million a year ($96,000 a week) and your tax bill would bump up 1.75%. In exchange, in the midst of tough economic times, a lousy job market, and a foreclosure crisis, millions of working New Yorkers would see a tax break exactly when they need it most.

I would suggest contacting Senator Larkin, since he’s our Senator until January 1st, and asking him to support the Assembly’s proposal. New Yorkers never needed help in such an urgent way as we do today.


Bill Berardi said...

Moving spending to income tax from property taxes does nothing.

Our State legislators, school and government employees pay no State tax on their taxpayer financed pension.

So the biggest beneficiaries of our taxes will not be sharing in expenses?

Reform the State income tax system before you shift taxes there.

Anonymous said...

The retired Governors, Legislators, District Attorneys, Judges, Federal, State, School district and Municipal employees pay zero State tax on their pensions - great let's pass it on to the private sector.