Griffo (2)The New York State Senate today passed legislation sponsored by Senator Joseph Griffo that would prohibit unfunded mandates from burdening local governments, schools, and their taxpayers.

The bill (S2295) would require certain state mandated programs imposed on municipalities and school districts to be funded by the state.

“Every time the state enacts a new mandated program, it’s often left up to municipalities and school districts to find a way to pay for the new program,” Griffo said. “But, local municipalities and school districts are fiscally-stressed enough, so they should have the freedom to decide what priorities and services they believe are worth funding for their communities, instead of being forced by the state to levy new taxes.

“If the state wants to tell municipalities and school districts what to do, then the state should be willing to provide the funding in order to achieve that goal. By once again passing this bill, the Senate continues to demonstrate its intolerance for unfunded mandates and the undue pressure it places on our communities.”

State mandated programs place local taxpayers and local officials in the position of paying for services they didn’t budget for, Senator Griffo said. The end result is that municipalities and school district often find themselves reluctantly having to impose more taxes on its residents to pay for programs and services they otherwise may not have wanted. Under the provisions of the bill, the education law is amended so that no unfunded mandate will be enacted if it creates a net additional cost on any school district or local government.

The legislation will now be sent to the Assembly, where it is sponsored by Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi, D-Utica.

By martha

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