The FY 2018 Budget continues the Governor's efforts to relieve the property tax burden and builds on the success of the 2 percent property tax cap. The typical New York homeowner pays 2.5 times more in local property taxes than in state income taxes. The Budget will empower citizens to control the cost of local government by requiring counties to assemble local governments to find efficiencies for real, recurring taxpayer savings. To ensure transparency and an active role for citizens in reducing their tax burden, public hearings and input will be required as part of the development of the shared services plans.
The Budget enacts an enhanced middle class child care tax credit that will help more than 200,000 middle-class families make their child care more affordable. The new tax credit would supplement the current New York State Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit and more than double the benefit for families earning between $60,000 and $150,000, bringing the total credit from $169 to $376 per household on average.
The FY 2018 Budget continues the progress made to strengthen educational outcomes and increase access to high-quality learning across New York State. It increases Education Aid by $1.1 billion, including a $700 million increase in Foundation Aid, bringing the new Education Aid total to $25.8 billion or an increase of 4.4 percent. Under Governor Cuomo, education aid has increased by $6.2 billion, or 32 percent, over six years.
- Prekindergarten: The Budget includes an over $800 million investment in prekindergarten to expand high-quality half-day and full-day prekindergarten for three- and four-year-old children in high-need school districts.
- Community Schools: The Budget provides $150 million—an increase of $50 million—to support the continued transformation of high-need schools into community hubs. This funding supports services that are unique to each school’s individual needs, including before-and-after school programs, summer learning activities, medical and dental care, and other social services.
- Empire State After-School Program: The FY 2018 Budget increases the state’s after-school investment with $35 million in new funding for public after-school programs in the state’s 16 Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative (ESPRI) as well as in communities in the state with high rates of child poverty. This new funding will create an additional 22,000 spots for students in after-school programs.
- Empire State Excellence in Teaching Awards: To recognize and honor excellence and innovation in the classroom, the Budget provides $400,000 to fund a second round of Empire State Excellence in Teaching awards. This funding will be awarded on a regional basis to at least 60 teachers across the state. Awardees will receive $5,000 to use for professional development activities, including coursework to enhance expertise, attendance at a state or national education conference, or enrollment in a summer institute or certification program.