On teletown hall, Stefanik faces some criticism for tax overhaul vote

Jan 12, 2018

Taxes were frequently brought up during a telephone town hall Thursday hosted by North Country Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-Willsboro). 

Stefanik was one of 12 Republicans who voted against their party's tax overhaul that was signed into law last month. Several people on Stefanik's teletown hall criticized her opposition, like Pamela from Stratford.

"We would like to respectfully disagree also, like Charlie from Oppenheim," Pamela said. "We are thankful for our president and his efforts to relieve the tax burden."

Only one caller who spoke defended the vote, saying the bill was "horrendous."

Stefanik says she did support lowering rates for individuals and businesses, but the new $10,000 cap on state and local tax income deductions was a deal breaker because it will likely result in a tax increase for some of her constituents. One caller said he was facing a $10,000 bill in property taxes.

Stefanik called on New York state lawmakers to rein in spending, cut taxes and stop sending so-called unfunded mandates to local governments. For her part, Stefanik says she's pushing more local economic initiatives.

"Attracting new businesses to our region, making sure that we are investing in our infrastructure, making sure we have rural broadband so that we can compete around the world frankly and attract new entrepreneurs," Stefanik said.

Stefanik also talked about other items on her agenda this year, including extending the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), codifying net neutrality into law, and sending a letter to President Donald Trump that encourages him to include climate change in his national security strategy.