Bloomberg’s Rebate Takeback and Bag Tax Illegal, Mayor Admits


Remember when the Mayor said he was going to rescind the $400 property tax rebates instituted in 2004? Turns out he won’t because he can’t — legally the City Council has to approve the takeback first.

The New York Times reports that this fun fact about local government was revealed by budget director Mark Page in a City Council hearing yesterday (by “burying his face in his hands, and mumbling, ‘Oh, forget it. Fine'”). And here’s something else Page was forced to admit: the six-cent bag tax the Mayor wants can’t just be ordered, but must first be approved by the state legislature.

In response to speculation that the Mayor was pulling some kind of fast one by floating these illegal plans in the first place, councilmember Donald Weprin said, “I don’t think it’s so Machiavellian; I just think they didn’t talk to their own lawyers.”