Gov. David Paterson has embraced an arbitrary proposal to cap school property taxes, limiting the amount of revenue districts would be able to raise locally. The proposal, recommended by Tom Suozzi's Real Property Tax Cap Commission appointed by former Gov. Spitzer, would cap taxes at 4 percent, or 120 percent of the CPI - whichever is less.
Voters across the state recently voted on their local school budgets, including nearly 350 that contained tax increases above the proposed arbitrary cap. A resounding 93 percent of budgets statewide were approved, underscoring New York's commitment to educational quality.
The solution to escalating property taxes is adequate state and federal funding, not arbitrary tax caps.
At a time when the state is beginning to close the achievement gap between rich and poor districts and leveling the playing field for all students, imposition of a cap will only derail the progress we've made.
Though NYSUT recognizes the need for property-tax relief, a cap is the wrong approach.
Please click below to send letters to the governor and your state senator and Assembly representative via fax, telling them: "It's our local budget."