Levittown lawyer lays out property tax plan in Senate race against Hannon

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Ethan Irwin, Democratic candidate for New York State Ethan Irwin, Democratic candidate for New York State Senate in the 6th District, on May 27, 2014. Photo Credit: James Escher

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Ethan Irwin, the Democratic candidate in Nassau’s 6th Senate District, has rolled out a three-point property tax relief plan.

Irwin, a former U.S. Marine from Levittown, is challenging Republican Sen. Kemp Hannon (R-Garden City) in November.

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Irwin’s plan calls for ending unfunded state mandates and enacting a circuit breaker for people with fixed incomes, including retirees and the disabled, to cap their property taxes at a percentage of their income.

He would also expand STAR benefits beyond the 2 percent increase set by the state to incentivize young people and seniors to remain on Long Island. The expansion, Irwin said, would be in tiered brackets, with the majority of the savings going to seniors and younger residents.

“For years, residents of Nassau County have been forced to pay some of the highest property taxes in the nation by Albany legislators who have repeatedly failed to produce real tax relief,” Irwin said. “We need 21st century ideas and a new approach that looks towards the future of Long Island.”

Senate GOP spokesman Scott Reif responded that Republicans, including Hannon, helped to create the STAR program, won approval of the STAR rebate checks and worked to enact the statewide 2 percent property tax cap.

“Nassau County taxpayers know that nobody fights harder than Kemp Hannon to deliver the property tax relief they need and deserve, and he’ll continue to do so once he’s re-elected to the State Senate,” Reif said.

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He added that "Ethan Irwin can't be for property tax relief when he's allied with the same New York City-led Senate Democrats who voted to take away the STAR rebate checks from seniors and homeowners here in Nassau County."

Hannon, first elected to the State Senate in 1989, has been an unsuccessful target for Nassau Democrats in recent years.

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