CHEEKTOWAGA – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo stopped in Cheektowaga Thursday afternoon to tout his plans to make the state’s 2% tax-cap a permanent reality.
“We’ve had the 2% property tax cap. Local governments have been following it for the past six years. It saved the state over $25 billion. It reduced taxation in Western New York over $2 billion,” said Mr. Cuomo said speaking from the Millenium Hotel.
The tax cap was initially enacted in 2011 and is set to expire in 2020. The Democratic governor has launched a Tax Fairness for the Middle-Class Campaign to make the property tax cap permanent.
“I want to make that 2% tax cap permanent so we can say to homeowners, we hear you, don’t worry, I understand that your property taxes are going to be going up because of [the salt deduction elemination], but we’re going to keep your property taxes consent at 2%. Don’t worry, don’t panic, stay with us, we’re handling it, and we’re going to continue that cap and keep it permanent so we can end those reckless, excessive increases year after years,” he said.
The governor is also planning to cut the income tax rate for middle-class residents.
“Every New Yorker pays a lower income tax rate today than the day I took office. The rate of state spending has been at a historic low – we live with the 2% cap increase year-to-year. The state has never done that before,” he adds. “Let’s cut income taxes on the state’s side.”
The first part of his statement is sort of true according to our research into the state’s tax brackets, but not every New Yorker is paying a lower income tax rate. Since the governor took office in 2011 the tax rates for single and married income filers have remained unchanged for the lower four income levels. On average, taxpayers making between $0 and $26,000 still pay the same tax.
The tax rates of residents making on average $26,001 and above have seen their tax rates decrease. For example, a family making $100,000 a year saw a decrease in their taxes from 6.85% in 2011 to 6.57% in 2018.
The governor said Thursday that he plans to cut the tax rate for income earners up to $150,000 from 6.85% to 5.5%. Incomes up to $300,000 will see a tax cut from 6.85% to 6%.
The second part of his statement saying state spending is at a historic low is somewhat true. The state budget has been near or below the 2% cap for the past three years.
“We’re capping your property taxes, and we’re lowing your state taxes. We heard you, we get it. New York is home, and we want you to keep it home. We want to attract new businesses, and that’s the best way of saying New York is open for business,” Mr. Cuomo said.
The tax cut is projected to produce $4.2 billion in annual savings for six million filers by 2025 according to the governor’s office. As the new rates phase-in, they will be the state’s lowest middle-class tax rates in more than 70 years.
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