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McMahon and Colleagues: Don’t Cut Municipal Aid and Stop Unfunded Mandates

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WAER News

Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon and his colleagues from across the state sent Albany a unified message ahead of the budget deadline: Don’t cut municipal aid and stop the unfunded mandates.  The county leaders joined a conference call to explain how they can’t make up the difference if the state goes through with cutting town and village aid, especially with more mandates and a property tax cap. 

McMahon called it hypocrisy.

“I find it ironic that we’re talking about making a tax cap permanent, at the same time there’s multiple initiatives being forced down local government’s throats, which make it very hard to live within that tax cap.  The reason why we even need a tax cap is because our taxes are too high anyway.”

Dutchess County Executive and former gubernatorial candidate Marc Molinaro said the state is imposing more on local taxpayers that any other state, except for New Hampshire.

“I had served on the governor’s tax force for mandate relief. We had expected at that time that with the imposition of his property tax cap that in fact the state would engage in an effort to reduce mandated spending. We know that that hasn’t happened.”

Albany County Executive Dan McCoy said we’re paying the highest taxes in the country.

“They force it down on us without even bringing us into the room to discuss anything. That’s the most disturbing thing out of this whole story, because the governor and the legislature want this great relationship but at the end of the day they’re not saying, ‘Hey, how does this affect you?’”

The state budget is due April first.

Scott Willis covers politics, local government, transportation, and arts and culture for WAER. He came to Syracuse from Detroit in 2001, where he began his career in radio as an intern and freelance reporter. Scott is honored and privileged to bring the day’s news and in-depth feature reporting to WAER’s dedicated and generous listeners. You can find him on twitter @swillisWAER and email him at srwillis@syr.edu.