In what amounts to a rare display of fiscal conservativism, a number of members of the City Council, in the face of a large budget surplus, are calling for property tax cuts in the upcoming negotiations with the mayor. Finance Chair, David Weprin told the NY Post in today's story that. "A potentail tax cut is on the table...That's all I can say at this point."
We should all remember that the city increased property taxes in 2002 by a whopping 18.5 percent, and that the commercial real estate tax increases led to an acrooss the board rent hike for city stores of close to 25%. This increase, when combined with the higher property taxc assessments have really hurt homeowners, especially those that are older and on fixed incomes.
All of this speculation is being fueled by the IBO estimates that say that the mayor's projections for a surplus are $1 billion too conservative. This presents a challenge to Speaker Quinn, who up until now has never been known to harbor any concern for tax paying homeowners or strapped neighborhood businesses. The pressure on her will increae because of all of the ambitions motivating the members of the council as the term limited year of 2009 approaches.