Statement From Assemblyman Tom McKevitt (R,C,I-East Meadow) On Spitzer’s State Of The State Address

January 9, 2008

At the start of every year, people have the right to be optimistic. When January 1 rolled around, I was looking forward to a productive legislative session; one where we brought real property tax relief to Long Island and ensured that we got our fair share. Even within the last few days, rumors circulated about the Governor finally implementing a long-awaited cap on property taxes. However, those turned out to be just rumors.

Instead of committing to enacting a property tax cap, Spitzer will merely appoint a government commission. Does he really think that New Yorkers are celebrating because we have yet another commission to look at the problem? There have been many commissions who have studied the issue of property taxes over the years, but no solution has ever been enacted. How is this commission supposed to solve the problems of hardworking, middle class families?

Not only is Spitzer delaying the solution months, or even years, but taxpayers will have to pay to develop and run his commission!

We need real property tax relief now, not rhetoric, commissions or further study. The solution is right in front of our eyes. We need a property tax cap and Spitzer is delaying it. Now taxpayers have to wait for a property tax cap, and foot the bill for this government commission in the meantime.

I will believe he’s serious about a cap when I see him propose it in legislation in writing. After last year, when he promised no new taxes then went ahead and raised business taxes, increased SUNY tuitions and allowed hikes in MTA fares and Thruway tolls, I am skeptical, to say the least.

Also, the Governor has failed to give details about Long Island’s fair share of education funding. Last year, his initial proposal was far below what we need. I will not be satisfied until I know, for certain, that Long Island gets its fair share of the State’s education funding. Anything less is unacceptable.