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Latimer Finds A Long Island Partner In Challenge To Proposed IRS Suburban Tax Increase

Westchester County Executive George Latimer and Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced their partnership fighting proposed federal regulations.
Westchester County Executive George Latimer and Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced their partnership fighting proposed federal regulations. Video Credit: Westchester County Government
Westchester County Executive George Latimer and Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone announced their partnership fighting proposed federal regulations. Photo Credit: Westchester County Government

Westchester County Executive George Latimer is teaming with other elected officials in New York in a partnership to fight recently proposed regulations that could impact suburban homeowners come tax season.

This week, Latimer and Suffolk County (Long Island) Executive Steve Bellone announced their partnership, calling on the IRS to amend proposed regulations that would “significantly limit the ability of homeowners and individuals’ from being able to deduct state and local taxes (SALT) on their federal tax returns."

“While the Federal Government claims only 5 percent of the nation will be impacted by the cap on SALT deductions, we know here in Westchester that is not the case,” Latimer said at a press conference in White Plains. “This cap will hurt our county’s working families, our property values and our way of life.”

According to the officials, “Westchester and Suffolk counties are home to a substantial ratio of taxpayers who will be adversely affected by the new federal tax law. This effectively imposes a tax increase on thousands of suburban households across the state.”

They noted that the regulations particularly hurt New York, where taxpayers pay more in federal taxes than they receive back in benefits. A change.org petition has also been started by Bellone.

“We are calling on the IRS to be fair and consistent across the nation, and halt these unprecedented regulations. Sign our petition now and join thousands of New Yorkers who are fighting back against this massive tax increase.”

“The looming tax increase headed towards New York from Washington can, and must, be stopped before it is too late,” Bellone said in a statement. “We will fight Washington’s effort to hurt our homeowners and residents, and I thank County Executive Latimer for his leadership and partnership in this endeavor.”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has offered an alternative to paying local taxes by making donations to set up state charities, but the IRS has taken measures to prevent that workaround, causing some confusion to area homeowners.

The two county executives are set to submit comments on behalf of their constituents during the proposed regulation comment period, which concludes on Thursday, Oct. 11. The IRS has scheduled a public hearing in Washington, D.C. on Nov. 3, where the officials plan on presenting their testimony in regards to the proposed regulations.

“The Federal Government is unfairly targeting some states and not others,” Latimer added. “I am committed to doing everything I can to find creative solutions to combat this cap. My message to the Federal Government is that Westchester County taxpayers do not deserve another tax increase in order to prove tax relief for others.”

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