Comptroller cautions fiscal prudence in local budgeting
Property tax levy growth for school districts will be capped at 1.81% for the 2020-21 fiscal year, down from a 2% cap in each of the two previous years, according to data released today by New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli.
“As the levy growth rate dips below 2%, school district and municipal officials need to be fiscally cautious and examine where they can limit spending to stay under the cap,” DiNapoli said. “Local governments will have to examine their budgets more closely to control expenses.”
The 1.81% cap affects the tax cap calculations for 676 school districts as well as 10 cities with fiscal years starting July 1, 2020, including the “Big Four” cities of Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers.
The tax cap, which first applied to local governments and school districts in 2012, limits annual tax levy increases to the lesser of the rate of inflation or 2% with certain exceptions, including a provision that allows school districts to override the cap with 60% voter approval of their budget.
For the list of allowable tax levy growth factors for all local governments, visit: www.osc.state.ny.us/localgov/realprop/pdf/inflation_allowablegrowthfactors.pdf.