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Muttocracy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-17-08 11:28 PM
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Budget axes campaign investigators (NY State)

Budget axes campaign investigators

By Jay Gallagher Albany Bureau December 17, 2008

Gov. David Patersons budget would wipe out 21 positions designed to check for campaign-finance fraud and other problems setting up New York to be another Illinois, a good-government lobbyist said today.

We already have the most loophole-ridden and lax campaign-finance law in the country, and this will just further decrease the small bit of confidence New Yorkers have in their government, said Barbara Bartoletti of the League of Women Voters.

Patersons plan would save $2.7 million by eliminating the Board of Elections jobs, most of which have yet to be filled after they were authorized in the 2007-08 state budget.

When asked if the Board of Elections could enforce campaign-finance laws without filling the positions, spokesman Robert Brehm said well do the best we can.

The jobs were authorized by the Legislature two years ago as part of a new law that required those seeking local political office as well as candidates for the Legislature and statewide offices to file their reports with the state board.

That change added 8,000 filers to the 1,700 the board was used to dealing with, Brehm said. The board has one investigator and three auditors to examine the filings, he said.

Bartoletti cited the case of newly elected Sen. Pedro Espada, a Bronx Democrat who has failed to file required financial reports of his campaign this year as a case where more enforcement is badly needed.

We have made it far too easy for people who just dont want to file campaign-finance reports, she said.

Espada has blamed a mixup by his campaign treasurer for the tardy statements, which had not been filed as of today.

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Historic NY Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-18-08 12:50 AM
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1. He isn't going to be elected again not with the taxes he is raising and
discontinuing of Star payments. My School taxes will go up 50% and I can't afford 1/3 of my retirememnt income going to taxes. If Patterson is playing games, he better find another way.
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Muttocracy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-18-08 01:25 AM
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2. I'm a little confused about the STAR program
I've read that it was going away, and then that rebate checks for it were going away but the exemption part would still be there. I looked into STAR when I was househunting a few years ago but didn't end up buying. I don't think I ever knew about the tax check part of it.
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Historic NY Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-18-08 09:28 AM
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3. School Tax Relief Program....seniors & middle class allegedly

For decades we heard about how the lottery money was going to schools, its was always blah, blah, blah.. finally they couldn't hide it anymore I guess and this came about. I used to laugh because the tax bill sent by the school district already had how much your bill was reduced by. Hey if they now how much you got they can still re-adjust their tax rate. I think its like the Wall Street Ponzi Scheme for school districts. A couple of years ago we starting getting a second check in the fall from Albany its kinda like a supplement. To me I think its just another way of Albany politicians trying to buy our votes. They want to feel good so the alleged middle class gets another check for between 400-600 dollars. If Albany was really looking out for our best interest they would fully fund schools. This exercise cost more money since they have to print out checks, etc. administrative BS,. Why not just whack it off on the original tax bill in Sept, is beyond me. Its like they give you two hands outs to quite the masses. The big catch is you have to reapply in order to get the check. If Gov. Paterson was so interested in doing something he would propose real school tax relief that is not tie to the property you own but rather to the income you have. Owning property should not be a test to the ability to pay.

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