The pandemic crisis has thrown a light for me on the responsibilities of running for office and what it takes to be in office. While I was concerned before with many of the changes and environmental issues facing the village, now survival seems primary.
As I began my second campaign and talked with many residents, it became clear that long-standing first home owners, many of them seniors, have felt uncertain and even despairing because of the changes impacting their lives. Out-of-scale development has increased their tax bills and pushed them to their limits. The situation of the small-business owners was also dire even before the closing down of everything.
Both our senior residents and our business owners need direct assistance and support during this time of economic uncertainty.
While tax revenue is essential for our village to operate, we must explore creative and innovative funding during this time of economic uncertainty. I urge the mayor and board to consider this tax relief.
Mayor Jesse Warren should be commended for his quick outreach to the public. He has sent informative letters to senior residents and been on the job keeping everyone informed. He did a great job on “Metro Focus.” Now he and the Southampton Village Board should lead in urging the town to lighten the tax load.
As a candidate for village trustee, I urge the Southampton Village Board to immediately relax the dates when taxes are due and to waive penalties for those who cannot pay.
The town should lead in this effort as well as begin to seriously do something about the severe impacts that the annual market value reassessment, their taxation model, has had on those most affected by it.
I wish everyone good health, peace of mind and a little fun during these hard times.
Joseph R. McLoughlin
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