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Counties call for hearing on tax cap in New York

As the state Senate this week takes up a bill that would make the state’s cap on property tax increases a permanent one, the New York State Association of Counties is calling hearings on the nearly eight-year-old law.

“On behalf of New York’s county governments, we appreciate the state’s continued focus on our high property taxes. Anything government can do to stabilize and lower property taxes is welcome news for homeowners and businesses,” NYSAC Executive Director Stephen Acquario said in a statement.

The cap, set to expire or “sunset” in June, limits property tax increases to the rate of inflation or 2 percent, whichever is lower. Some lawmakers, in both parties, have called for changes to the cap, which Gov. Andrew Cuomo has largely resisted, save for minor tweaks.

It’s not clear what, if any, changes county governments would want for the cap, though they have pushed for a lower of state mandated spending as a follow up to the cap over the last decade.

“We encourage both houses of the legislature to hold public hearings on property taxes, the property tax cap, and ways that state and local governments can work together to lower this burden,” Acquario said. “We need to avoid further population loss that leaves more financial responsibility for those that remain in our great state. In a public hearing, state lawmakers can hear from local officials the impact that state policies have in our communities.”

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