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Nassau Executive Floats Direct Resident Payments, Lower Property Taxes In Proposed Budget

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran
Office of Nassau County Executive Laura Curran
Nassau County Executive Laura Curran

Nassau County residents could receive $375 direct payments and have property taxes lowered next year. County Executive Laura Curran included $70 million cuts to property taxes in her budget proposal released on Tuesday.

Curran said with so many families still struggling from the pandemic, this is a no-brainer.

“It is our moral responsibility to push that money out to our homeowners, to our renters and to our families,” she said.

The proposal was given after Republicans, who control the Nassau County Legislature, said they would review Curran’s homeowner assistance program. Democrats want to use federal coronavirus relief to give cash to up to 400,000 households. Final approval for the proposal will be voted when the Legislature meets on September 27.

Republican lawmakers also want to cut nearly $100 million in county fees — by eliminating a service fee for public safety, changing tax map verification and reducing recording fees by $50. The fees are paid by thousands of Nassau residents every year.

“After Curran vetoed tax cuts proposed in last year’s budget, the majority will eliminate almost $100 million in county fees paid by Nassau residents to keep more money in their pockets,” said County Legislature Presiding Officer Richard Nicolello on Monday.

Democrats support removing the public safety fee — but not for the same reasons. They had opposed this fee when it was introduced years ago, while the Republicans backed it.

“They deserve no credit for trying to fix the problem they were instrumental in creating,” said William Biamonte, chief of staff to the minority caucus.

Curran said the $100 million in fee revenues are included in her 2021-2022 budget. She said it was “too premature to say anything” when asked if she would veto the fee cuts.

Clare is a former news fellow with WSHU Public Radio.