Governor Cuomo has been busy heralding the successes of the recent Long Island legislative session, but where are the property tax breaks for local homeowners?
While the Governor proclaims this as one of the most productive sessions “on record for communities in New York”, there seems to be the same gaping hole as always – any sign of help for Long Island homeowners and a fix for the catastrophe of a property tax system we have. Or is that the loophole that voids out all of the other fancy talk?
In fairness, there are a lot of great elements and maneuvers that have passed. In fact far more than most would have expected. This includes arbitration and contracting ‘reforms’, gaming revenues, investing in education, grants for promoting academic excellence, and ‘tax cuts’ and credit for New York businesses a middle class families.
Unfortunately all of these other tax cuts or credits are meaningless if they are far outweighed by property tax increases.
Startup NY is a fabulous idea, but potentially focuses too much on students and those coming in from out of the area. The concept and argument is great and moves to attract life and growth, but if all it means is crushing families and homeowners, with the extra burden while others don’t pay taxes the money isn’t going to stick around. When people make it they will leave, or they will own businesses here and live elsewhere, and while we may enjoy a growth spurt, without that mature middle market generating income and taxes and supporting the system the cycle will just repeat itself, and once those enterprises start generating money it will flow outside of the community.
Sadly, perhaps the most effective move recently was the $10.6 million received from HUD for the housing Long Island’s homeless. Of course much of it could be soaked up in administrative costs, but creating more working and property owning members of the community could help increase the property tax base and help to spread the burden. However, this would obviously take years to have this type of impact.
So in the interim filing a tax grievance continues to be the best solution for Long Island property owners looking to reduce housing expenses and avoid paying more than their fair share.