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Association Of Counties

The Empire

New York localities struggle with tax cap pinch

Thursday, September 22, 2011

By Karen DeWitt, WXXI Capitol Bureau Chief

School boards and county leaders in parts of New York are warning voters they may need to override the newly enacted 2 percent property tax cap. Without an override there might not be enough money to pay for flood damage from two tropical storms as well as mandated state programs, they said.

The Association of Counties said as many as a dozen counties may begin the override process. Tompkins, Tioga, Chautauqua, and Rockland Counties are considering hearings, and St Lawrence County has held one already.

Governor Andrew Cuomo, a tax-cap champion, said the rules are designed to allow communities to make that decision for themselves.

“They can raise it to whatever they want it to be. That’s it. There is no big brother here,” he said.

But Steve Acquario of the county association said, “it’s a little bit more complicated than that.”

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