County Braces For Tax-cap Woes
Published: April 14th, 2014
By: Shawn Magrath

CHENANGO COUNTY – Despite the already challenging two percent property tax cap mandate, legislative bodies across New York State may brunt an even lower tax cap for the 2015 fiscal year.

According to the New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC), state municipalities may have to adhere to a 1.25 percent tax cap when developing their annual financial plan in the fall. NYSAC's projection is based on preliminary data. The organization says information is now available for the first eight months of the calculation period that helps determine the inflation growth factor for 2015.

Under state law, taxing jurisdictions are required to meet the 2 percent property tax cap or the rate of inflation (whichever is lower). Barring major economic shocks that drastically increases the cost of running local government, including natural disasters, NYSAC says the 2015 inflation rate in New York State is likely to range between 1.25 percent and 1.45 percent.

“It's too early to know right now how this potential change will affect us,” said Chenango County Treasurer William Craine, citing additional factors, including the county's state pension bill and community college chargeback rates, that help determine the tax cap but aren't typically available until later in the year.

Adhering to the state tax cap is one of the budgetary precepts established by county officials, he added. “We want to meet the tax cap and we will do everything we can to make that happen.”

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