Governor Signs Executive Order to Lower Property Taxes by Preventing Unfunded Mandates

On April 27, Governor David A. Paterson took a significant step toward responding to what this Web site is all about – unfunded state mandates. Surrounded by local officials and representatives from the state’s municipal associations, including NYCOM, the Governor announced the issuance of an Executive Order that would require any legislation or regulation proposed by a state office or agency and containing a mandate, to include: the estimated cost to local governments (which shall be determined based on input obtained from local governments and local government associations); a cost-benefit analysis; and proposed sources of revenue to fund such mandate. This information must be provided to the Secretary to the Governor, the Counsel to the Governor, the Director of State Operations and the Director of the Division of Budget prior to the formalization of any proposal. The Executive Order also instructs state agencies to undertake a review of their current regulations and report on any proposed changes that would mitigate the impact of exiting mandates on local governments.

To view a copy of the Executive Order, click here. To view a copy of the accompanying press release, click here.

While this action taken by the Governor is a clear indication that he understands the impact state mandates have on local budgets and local taxpayers, it is imperative that the State Legislature have that same understanding if New York is going to make any real progress toward reducing its local property tax burden.