Governor Forcing Families Out of Their Homes

February 10, 2005
Year after year, the governorís budget proposal unfairly taxes working families or cuts services they depend on. Unfortunately, the governorís budget is no different this year. He continues to add to the already tremendous burden on Suffolk County property taxpayers. But this time, his taxes combined with rising inflation are threatening many local homeowners Ė potentially forcing them out of their homes.

As reported in a recent Newsday article, the cost of buying a single-family home rose by 33 percent to $355,000 in Suffolk County between 2002 and last year Ė an expense which alone could force many community members right out of the local housing market.

The governor should be working to protect the American Dream of home ownership; instead his budget is turning that dream into a nightmare. His proposal to raise the Mortgage Recording Tax by a ridiculous 40 percent can only be described as disastrous. The cost of housing in Suffolk County is already way above the statewide median value of $232,000 for a single-family home. This mortgage tax increase will only make it harder to purchase a home in our community.

The governorís constant assault on New York State homeowners is infuriating. And we can expect no help at the federal level either. President Bush has floated a proposal to revamp the federal tax code which would cost New Yorkers $39 billion in tax deductions. If enacted, millions of households would lose deductions they rely on to help make ends meet.

That is why Iím working with state, county and local officials to help Suffolk County families stay in their homes and beloved communities. I will once again fight the governorís dream killing taxes and work for a responsible budget that protects the quality-of-life of Suffolk County families, and ensures homeowners and their children can afford to live in the community for years to come.