June 02, 2011

Support for tax cap down 20 percent

Source: NYSUT Communications

A new poll released today by Quinnipiac University shows support amongst New Yorkers for a property-tax cap has fallen by nearly 20 percent.

The plunge - from 79 percent in April to 60 percent in the latest poll - suggests the more people learn about the proposed tax cap legislation, the less they like.

The earlier poll simply asked New Yorkers whether there should be a cap on property taxes.

The new Quinnipiac poll, however, delivers a more detailed question, pointing out to respondents that under the proposed legislation, the 2-percent cap must be overridden with a 60-percent vote - a measure that effectively voids the democratic ideal of one-person, one-vote.

Passage of a tax cap is one of Gov. Cuomo's top legislative priorities. The state Assembly last month introduced its version of tax-cap legislation, and the state Senate passed its own tax-cap bill in January.

Combined with this year's $1.3 billion cut in aid and several years of cuts to education, a tax cap would devastate New York's public-education system, leading to the elimination of vital programs, more overcrowded classrooms, and thousands of additional layoffs. The impact on municipalities would also cripple our community colleges.

The drop in support for a tax cap also coincides with a recent editorial by The New York Times, which called the cap: "a cheap political tool ... that will only further devastate communities."

NYSUT is working diligently to block, or significantly change, the tax-cap legislation. The union is also urging members to call the governor and their own legislators to reject the tax-cap bills A-7916 and S-2706.

Members can reach the governor's office and their lawmakers by calling 1-877-255-9417.