Recent polling indicates there is overwhelming support amongst New Yorker’s for a property tax cap. A May 19th Siena poll indicated that 71% of residents support the tax cap. A poll released just yesterday by Quinnipiac University, identified that the cap had a 56 – 37 percent backing among voters in union households. Yet today, NYSUT, the union that represents thousands of teachers across New York, will invest $1.3M in a media campaign to oppose the cap. You can watch that video at http://www.capitaltonight.com/2011/06/nysut-begins-anti-tax-cap-push/. They say the cap will hurt the kids. Yet they fail to admit that in Massachusetts, a state with a 2.5 percent cap, they spend less than New York and have higher graduation rates.
So why should this bother me? When you watch the video, you will see that the overwhelming source of talking points for the ad come from the New York Times. That paper has been a staunch opponent of the cap even editorializing it on at least three occasions. That is their First Amendment right granted them by the US Constitution. Yet there are many other Editorial Boards that support the cap and mandate relief. That includes the Buffalo News (http://bit.ly/kDvqbc) and the Democrat & Chronicle (http://bit.ly/mF6uta).
There are many people in this state that don’t want change. They want the status quo. That includes many of the taxpayer dependent organizations that fear the cap. With a cap in place, cost drivers like salaries, benefits and pensions will get greater scrutiny. That scrutiny will likely lead to changes in how contracts are negotiated and the benefit levels provided by state and local governments. When that occurs, we will find less strain on our already overburdened taxpayers and private sector businesses.
Change isn’t always bad. In fact, change is often needed to secure a brighter future. We can change New York’s future, for the better, by enacting a 2-percent property tax cap. Help us achieve that goal. Click this link, http://bit.ly/l42nqC , to send a note to your elected official telling them you support the cap. Let’s not lose this opportunity to pass a law that benefits EVERY New York State resident.
Opposing the cap isn’t about protecting kids. It’s about protecting union membership. Let’s not be swayed by people that want to continue to use us as an ATM by keeping the status quo.