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Sunday, September 21, 2014

Why New York state must maintain a balance of power

When our Founding Fathers sat down to create the Constitution, they decided it would be best to devise a system of checks and balances in order to guard the people against tyranny.

Here in New York, a state where registered Democratic voters outnumber Republicans by almost 2.8 million, it’s important to maintain a balance of power so that the authority given to our elected officials by the people is not abused.

We have had Democratic governors for the past eight years, but the number of Republicans in the State Senate has been shrinking. For the sake of our hard-pressed taxpayers, it is critically important that we keep a Republican-controlled Senate to maintain the current balance of power.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has recently launched “No Excuses,” another part of his property tax cap plan. This planned $2 billion in tax cuts has the slogan “We’ve capped them, now let’s cut them.” It’s a good plan, one that picks up where the tax cap started in 2011.

Local governments and schools are being pressed to streamline services and consolidate. They’re passing this anxiety on to their state legislators. Lower costs mean lower taxes! Under Cuomo’s plan, property owners in localities and districts that stick to the state tax cap will receive refunds in the mail.

Cuomo was on Long Island last week, and in a speech he told Long Islanders that the tax cap would provide critical relief for homeowners. Newsday reported that Cuomo noted in his speech that in Nassau County there are 305 local governments, including 39 fire districts and 28 water districts. Of the consolidation plan, he said, “Not everyone needs to do everything. Not everyone has to have their own maintenance garage. Not everyone has to have their own lawyers. We can find ways for governments to work together to reduce costs.”

This is an important plan, necessary for tax relief. But it must still pass the State Legislature. I guarantee that if the Democrats take control of the State Senate, your property taxes will not decrease; they will increase.

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