‘BIG UGLY’ BILL LIVES UP TO ITS NAME

            “Tonight I voted against an omnibus legislation rushed through the legislative process on the final day of session because it contained a variety of poorly constructed bills. Despite the inclusion of mild tax rebates in the bill, we have not accounted for postage, printing, processing and personnel to construct and mail out property-tax rebate checks. These added costs will surely be paid for by taxpayers and will drain resources from other areas of future budgets, such as education and infrastructure aid. Furthermore, these checks will substantially increase and be mailed out only days before Gov. Cuomo’s re-election in 2018. We should not be buying votes with taxpayer dollars.

            “The ‘Big Ugly’ bill fails to address the root cause of soaring property-taxes in New York State: unfunded mandates. The average state receives 2% of its revenue as transfers from local governments while New York receives 15% of its revenue from local governments. In shifting roughly 1/7 of the costs of the state to local governments, we have forced them to raise property-taxes to make up the lost revenue. This is shameful and irresponsible governing. Tax rebate checks or a property-tax cap will not solve our state’s rising property-taxes. This must be done at the state level by refusing to shift costs to our localities.”

            “It is ridiculous that in this legislation, Gov. Cuomo was granted the power to wed individuals. That power should be held by religious figures and justices of the peace. For these reasons I am disappointed in this bill and voted against it for these reasons.”

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