Governor Cuomo is passing his fiscal crisis onto local governments by cutting nearly $10 million in financial support and proposing draconian cuts to our communities.
Some cities face a 20 percent cut in the direct state aid to municipalities known as AIM funding. Towns and villages would receive no state support at all. This forces counties to make up the difference through sales tax collections (and probably sales tax increases).
All local government assistance payments are facing a 5-percent cut. On top of this, the Governor is reducing aid to localities for economic development by $20 million and cutting nearly $10 million in state support to Video Lottery Terminals statewide, making it that much harder for our communities to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.
The Governor is putting an additional strain on overburdened local governments and taxpayers. First, it’s sales tax increases to replace AIM. Then, the cuts in other assistance programs makes it harder for local governments to both stay within the property tax cap and maintain essential services.
We need to ensure local governments are equipped to make it through the current crisis and have the resources to help rebuild our state in the years to come.
Residents shouldn’t have to fear a decline in services or about having to pay more in sales and property taxes. As we continue the budget process, I will fight for our taxpayers and our local officials and ensure they have everything they need to keep our communities strong.