McLaughlin: Today Signals A Victory For Upstate Taxpayers

Legislative Statement by Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin (R,C-Melrose)
June 24, 2011
I strongly support a property tax cap. I have been leading the fight for one since I took office in January and became the Ranking Minority Member on the Real Property Taxation committee. Albany collects more state income tax per capita than any other state. Skyrocketing taxes have chased upstate families out of New York, taking some of the brightest young minds with them. Today’s passage of a property tax cap is a huge win for families and employers as New York continues to move from fiscal recovery to economic prosperity.

My message has been the same throughout this debate – Albany needs to get serious about listening to the taxpayers and the endless struggles we face balancing our budgets. Albany does not have a revenue problem, Albany has a spending addiction. I believe in fiscal conservative principles and stand by my convictions today that a property tax cap will curb the outrageous spending that has forced families out of New York.

I have consistently supported legislation that is pro-taxpayer and pro-business by supporting the New York State Property Taxpayers Protection Act and, most recently, the Taxpayer Protection and Mandate Relief Act. While a 2% property tax cap is a homerun for taxpayers, it’s a strikeout for our schools and localities because little was done to address unfunded mandates that are bankrupting our communities. Leaving mandate relief on the back burner represents another missed opportunity.

I will continue to work with school districts and local leaders to support unfunded mandate relief. Without it, a property tax cap will fail to address high taxes and schools will likely be forced to continue to pass the increased costs onto taxpayers. Mandate relief is imperative to New York’s long-term financial future. Let’s work toward adequate mandate relief so that we can complete the people’s work.