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O'Mara Calls Out Utility Tax Plan

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ALBANY (WENY) -- State Senator Tom O'Mara is calling out Governor Andrew Cuomo for his plan to extend a utility tax hike on New Yorkers.

Governor Cuomo is proposing a five-year extention on a two-percent energy utility tax that's affecting New York residents and businesses.

The tax hike was enacted in 2009 under former Governor David Paterson.

Senator O'Mara says the higher utility tax rate was supposed to be temporary, and extending it would be unfair to thousands of New Yorkers trying to make ends meet.

"It raises over $500 million a year, and the money is not going to any utility purpose, it's going to the general fund of the government," says O'Mara. "It was supposed to expire, and the Governor wants to extend it for five more years. $2.5 billion dollars on the utility bill that's already overtaxed."

O'Mara and other Senate Republicans are urging the Governor to address the utility tax hike before his final state budget is due.