New Yorkers voting on school budgets for next year have approved nearly all of the proposals containing tax increases that fell below the state tax cap, while those budgets that exceeded were much more likely to fail.
According to the NYS School Boards Association, about 96% of school budgets were approved by voters. But for districts seeking to exceed the cap, just 25% were approved.
This was the second year that school district budgeting was guided by the state’s real property tax cap, which generally limits increases in the tax levy to 2% or the rate of inflation. Districts can try to override the tax cap, but those that do must seek a 60% supermajority, rather than the simple majority required otherwise.
We are pleased to see that the cap is working. Without it, many of us would have seen much larger, and unaffordable, tax increases. But in order for the cap to be truly effective, we need every member of the Legislature and the Governor committed to meaningful mandate relief. In fact, it was said quite nicely by the Editorial Board of the Buffalo News. You can read it here.