Ranzenhofer, Hawley call on residents to sign petition to repeal 2% utility tax; Introduce legislation to immediately repeal the tax


Batavia, NY –  New York State Senator Michael Ranzenhofer and State Assemblyman Steve Hawley called on residents today to sign petitions calling for the repeal of the new 2% tax on all utility bills.

“New York State cannot afford to tax itself out of this fiscal mess.  This new tax doesn’t even come close to fixing the $2.1 billion State deficit; it’s only expected to raise $540 million.  Instead, State leaders and the Governor must consider cutting spending,” said Senator Ranzenhofer.  “State leaders don’t realize that these new taxes and fees hurt residents who are trying to make ends meet. The petition allows constituents to join my efforts in waking up State leaders to the problems with news taxes and fees,” he added.

“Already residents are struggling to pay their utility bills, especially our seniors.  This tax is a perfect example of Albany shifting the burden of their out of control spending in our state and I am working to relieve residents and businesses from this unnecessary tax,” said Assemblyman Hawley.

Starting July 1, 2009, individuals and businesses have to pay a 2% State Assessment Fee on top of their monthly utility bills.  The Democrats included the fee in the 2009 New York State Budget.  New York State requires utility companies to collect the assessment until March 2014.  Utility companies do not profit from the tax.  The tax is expected to raise approximately $540 million in the first year. 

Both Senator Ranzenhofer and Assemblyman Hawley have introduced legislation in the State Legislature to repeal the 2% utility tax.  The proposed legislation, S6132/A9098, would terminate the tax immediately.   

To sign Senator Ranzenhofer’s petition, residents may visit www.SenatorRanzenhofer.com or contact his district office at (716) 631-8695.  To sign Assemblyman Hawley’s petition, residents can call his district office at (585) 589-5780. 

 “As a New York State resident, I am frustrated beyond belief with all the new taxes and fees.  It just never seems to end.  Just when I thought that New York State had exhausted all the possible ways to tax us, they find one more way to squeeze a few dollars out of our wallets with this new utility tax,” said Batavia resident Louis Pascucci.