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Time to Pull Plug on “Temporary” electric tax

New York State should let a 2009 temporary tax on electric bills die in 2017 as promised. In a letter to Governor Andrew Cuomo the New York State Business Council, the Business Council of Westchester and other business groups urged the Governor not to consider extending the tax originally implemented to help the state during the worst of the “Great Recession.”

If the 2 percent tax on electric bills is allowed to sunset in March as promised, it will save businesses and residential consumers more than $200 million.

The Temporary State Energy and Utility Service Conservation Assessment (often referred to as 18‐a) is no longer needed and should not be extended, says the letter. Repeal of the law creating the tax was included in the BCW’s 2016 Legislative Agenda, and has been a priority item for the past four years.

“There was an explicit promise made to New York resident and business ratepayers that the energy assessment would not be permanent,’’ the letter states. “New Yorkers should not be asked to continue to pay this unnecessary assessment. The Section 18‐a energy assessment must be allowed to sunset as scheduled.”

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