MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. – Mount Vernon residents are voicing their displeasure on Facebook with Mayor Ernie Davis’ proposed 2013 budget which would raise property taxes by 9.8 percent.
The budget released Friday, Nov. 23, to the City Council contains a tax levy hike nearly five times above the state-imposed 2 percent tax cap. Though three out of the five members of the City Council voted to override the cap, none of them said they would approve the budget in its current form without cutting it.
Resident Jaime Andujar said on The Mount Vernon Daily Voice’s Facebook page that he heard Comptroller Maureen Walker say the city has a surplus. Andujar questioned why the tax hike is so high.
“The increases will affect every person that lives in Mount Vernon from owners to renters,” Andujar said. “A city on the move? With this tax hike it will be a city that people are moving out of. Why will family or business stay in Mount Vernon?”
Resident Lisa Parker said, “Come on can we live a little?” while resident Donny Wancho asked if the 2 percent tax cap is a joke. Wancho said if a city overrides the tax cap one year, it must live under the cap the following year.
“Better yet, have no increase the following year,” Wancho said.
The Mount Vernon City Council will meet on Friday night at City Hall to discuss cuts to the budget.