Raia Fighting to Restore Long Island School Aid

March 7, 2008

Assemblyman Andrew Raia (R,I,C,WF-East Northport) today attended a Nassau County Budget Hearing to reassure Long Island students and teachers that he will continue to battle Gov. Eliot Spitzer over his proposed plan not to give Long Island schools their fair share of state aid. The assemblyman also stressed that cuts in aid will force local governments to compensate for the loss by, once again, raising our property taxes.

“We cannot allow the governor to forget about Long Island schools, students and teachers,” said Raia. “I am disappointed the governor continues to ‘pass the buck’ onto our local governments and force them to raise our taxes, further placing financial stress on the hard-working taxpayers of Long Island. We must send a message to the governor loud and clear that he cannot expect Long Island taxpayers to foot the bill for the rest of the state. Enough is enough!”

In order to combat higher property taxes, Raia said he is supporting a bill that will ensure New York state taxpayers retain all of the savings associated with the Middle Class STAR Rebate program, which was enacted in the 2007-2008 state budget. Currently, the governor has proposed to cut the STAR rebate to middle-class property owners.

“Taxpayers need meaningful long-term relief from skyrocketing property taxes,” said Raia. “Instead, his Executive Budget is full of gimmicks and offers no long-term solutions to real problems for Long Island property owners.”

Raia vowed to work with his legislative colleagues on both sides of the aisle to turn back some of the ill-advised initiatives the governor has proposed.