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Letter: Galef Asks Public To Advocate For Circuit Breaker Tax Relief

Assemblywoman Sandy Galef.
Assemblywoman Sandy Galef. Photo Credit: File

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. – The Daily Voice accepts signed letters to the editor. Send letters to

To the Editor:

We have a real opportunity in this year's state budget to adopt a new tax-relief program to help those who pay too much of their household income for property taxes. If you believe this could impact you and your family, I hope  you will be the strongest advocate for its adoption within the next two weeks. Gov. Andrew Cuomo introduced this program in his proposed budget as the Property Tax Credit Program, which also was included in the Assembly budget. I introduced the same concept many years ago with Sen. Betty Little called the Circuit Breaker Program. The concepts are similar.

I believe this approach would help many New Yorkers who pay more than 6 percent of their household income for property taxes and have a total adjusted gross income of less than $250,000. As owners of homes, condos or co-ops, you would be entitled to an income tax credit on a sliding scale for property taxes you pay above the 6 percent level. On average, owners of property will receive a tax credit of between $781 and $1,500. That tax credit would help approximately 1.3 million middle income households in New York. Those who do not owe taxes at tax time would get a reimbursement for their outlay from the Tax Department.

This program offers middle-class taxpayers a fair and balanced approach to property tax relief based on need and income. This really targets those who are struggling the most with their high property taxes and have less income to pay them. I thank the governor and the Assembly for being such strong advocates for this program, but be aware that during budget negotiations this important new tax-relief program could fall through the cracks. If you support the circuit breaker, call your New York State Senate representative now to push for this tax relief program in the 2015-16 state budget. This tax credit will give help to many and help keep families in their homes.

Sincerely, Sandy Galef NYS Assemblywoman - 95th AD

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