Latimer’s $2.1B budget plan includes property tax cut, more spending

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Westchester Executive George Latimer’s $2.1 billion budget unveiled Friday calls for a property tax cut, but more spending in 2020.

Latimer says the increased spending plan, which is about $200 million higher than the current budget, is due to multiple changes.

“In this budget, we are not borrowing to pay for pension costs or certiorari costs,” says Latimer. “We're implementing criminal justice reform, we have additional health care costs for our work force, we have additional union contract costs.”

The proposal also pledging to cut the property tax levy by $1 million. Latimer says it’s the “first time in nine years that the county executive, executive branch has presented to the Legislature a cut in property tax levy and it’s only the second time in 19 years."

ATTOM Data Solutions released a report stating the highest property taxes in the entire country are in Westchester County.

MORE: Report: Westchester, Rockland have highest property taxes of all US counties 

The cut is due to the hike in the sales tax earlier this year. Latimer says it evens the playing field in neighboring jurisdictions.

"The sales tax rate that you pay in Mount Vernon will now be the same sales tax rate that you pay in Bronxville, seems fair to me,” he says. “By doing so, we've been able to generate revenue that will help us do these things that we talked about in the county level."

That includes allocated money for a number of nonprofit organizations, environmental programs and the human rights commission in the wake of the rise of hate crimes across the county.

The Board of Legislators will vote on the 2020 budget on Dec. 9.

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