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Local governments can raise taxes 2%, state comptroller says

New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli

New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli Credit: Jeff Bachner

Local governments can increase property taxes by 2% in 2022, a more generous bump than the 1.56% allowed in 2021, State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said.

The 2% cap announced Wednesday limits how much governments can increase levies — the amount raised from property taxes. The restriction applies to governments with calendar-based fiscal years, including counties, towns and fire districts as well as some cities and villages.

Next year will be the third time since 2019 that government tax growth has been restricted to 2%, DiNapoli said. Calendar year 2021 was an exception, with the cap set at 1.56%, the comptroller said.

"As the economy recovers from the pandemic, local governments have seen some revenues rebound and have benefited from one-time federal financial assistance," DiNapoli said in a statement. "At the same time, the risk of inflationary cost increases and the need for reinvestments that will stimulate economic growth and fund essential services may lead to challenging budget decisions ahead."

When asked about the restriction, Nassau County Executive Laura Curran's office said she "is a strong proponent of the property tax cap, which is why Nassau County government has not taken a penny more in taxes" since she took office.

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said he supports the cap, saying in a statement: "That is why I always have, and will continue to, sign a county budget that does not pierce the cap."

County governments are focused on supporting homeowners after 17 challenging months, said Stephen J. Acquario, executive director of the New York State Association of Counties.

"As county governments across the state prepare for their 2022 budgets, the priority will be to focus on the most fiscally sustainable way to help their communities recover and get businesses and people back to work," Acquario said in a statement. "Counties are well aware of the long-standing property tax pressures on homeowners, especially on Long Island, and we will continue to encourage state policies that do not ask local taxpayers to pay more for state programs and services."

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