Westchester County GOP Chairman criticizes Westchester Assembly Democrats for failure to pass Cuomo property tax cap bill

Westchester County Republican Chairman Doug Colety today criticized Assemblymembers Latimer, Abinanti, Paulin and Pretlow for failing to support Governor Cuomo’s property tax cap bill on April 11th, even though the average Westchester County taxpayer pays more than $10,500 in property taxes and is saddled with the high tax burden in the country.

“Despite the fact that Westchester County taxpayers are drowning in high property taxes, Westchester’s Assembly Democrat delegation refused to make property tax relief a priority,” said Chairman Colety.  “They aren’t listening to Westchester County families who are screaming for tax relief and they should be ashamed of themselves.”

While blasting Assemblymembers Abinanti, Paulin and Pretlow for voting down a GOP-sponsored amendment that would have enacted Cuomo’s popular tax cap legislation, Colety singled out Latimer, who was marked “absent” on the measure despite voting on every other bill which came to the floor that day.

According to official Assembly records, Latimer voted in favor of 5 other bills on April 11, including legislation to enact the New York state fair pay act (A6130) and to expand rent control for apartment dwellers–more than 95 percent of whom reside in New York City.

According to official Assembly records, Latimer was “absent” on the Governor’s property tax cap program bill, the vote for which (7:18 pm) took place between the Fair Pay Act (7:07 pm) and the rent regulations bill (8:17 pm).

“You don’t need to be an Albany insider to know that George Latimer is taking Westchester County taxpayers for a ride.  Rather than stand up for our families and do the job he was elected to do, George Latimer took a walk.  His failure of leadership when it comes to doing anything about high property taxes should make every Westchester County resident stand up and take notice,” Colety said.

Earlier this year, the State Senate overwhelmingly approved the Governor’s property tax cap bill, which would cap the annual growth in school district and local government tax levies at 2 percent.

If the Assembly would take up and pass the Governor’s bill, the property tax cap would become law in New York State.  The measure voted down by a largely party line vote on April 11th would have been the first step toward forcing a vote on the property tax cap in the Assembly.

“While there’s no excuse for this, George Latimer should explain why he voted to protect low-cost apartments for well-off Manhattan socialites while refusing to protect struggling local taxpayers right here in Westchester County,” Colelty said.  “It’s inexcusable.”

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Douglas A. Colety was elected the 14th Chairman of the Westchester Republican County Committee in 2007, after having served seven years as the committee’s Secretary. He was re-elected as county chairman in 2009 and 2011.