Statement from Assemblyman Brian Kolb Regarding 2006 State of the State

January 5, 2006

The end of 2005 was very rewarding for me and my Assembly minority colleagues because we got critically important laws passed and we established momentum for the upcoming 2006 legislative session.

Gov. George Pataki in his annual “State of the State” address talked about making New York a better place to live and raise our families, as well as the positive changes he has witnessed since becoming governor. He also proposed ways New York can continue to improve and goals for the new year.

My Assembly minority colleagues and I have many issues to work on in 2006 that are in line with Gov. Pataki: property tax reform, civil confinement and tax relief for families.

I would like to help make life easier for families across New York state by reducing the amount of taxes they are forced to pay. Property taxes have become a burden on New Yorkers, taking up a huge chunk of the increasing taxes our residents pay every year. My conference has formed the Assembly Minority Commission on Alternatives to School Property Taxes which has been working hard coming up with ideas to reduce the property tax burden that our residents have felt.

The Governor’s proposal for the Pro-Family Tax Cut Program is right in line with our legislative agenda for 2006. We want to put money back in the pockets of our residents; we will examine Medicaid spending and cap the counties’ Medicaid costs to prevent those costs from being passed on to county property taxpayers. We also want to cut families’ income taxes and give them a direct school property tax rebate check in order to grant more financial freedom to our residents.

The end of 2005 saw my conference members and me working on keeping dangerous sexual predators out of our communities. We will continue to keep civil confinement at the forefront of our list of priorities, along with the extension of the ten-year Megan’s Law registration requirement.

We want to make New York a better place for its residents and we would also like to make it a more attractive place for people and businesses to move to. We wish to maintain New York’s reputation as a wonderful place to live, and my colleagues and I resolve to do just that in 2006.