Lewis County Mulls Sales Tax Hike

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A Lewis County lawmaker thinks he has the votes to raise the county's sales tax.

"There'll be a resolution and we'll vote on it and I believe my fellow legislators will go along with it," said Philip Hathway, who represents Harrisville.

Hathway says he hates taxes as much as anyone, but this year's budget-cutting has convinced him something has to change.

"We've just got to find revenue somewhere and my thought is that at least this spreads it out further than on the landowners," he said.

Hathway's proposal would hike the county's sales tax a quarter of a percent.

That would put it higher than neighboring Jefferson and St. Lawrence counties.

The problem with a sales tax hike, of course, is that it requires permission from Albany.

In recent years, the state has not been in the mood to give it.

But in a statement, state Senator Joe Griffo said that while he's against raising taxes, he's willing to listen to Lewis County.

Assemblyman Ken Blankenbush said pretty much the same thing.

But, what about those who would pay the higher tax?

"It's a good way. Everybody's paying," said county resident Richard Bellinger.

"Raise taxes, lower taxes, it just doesn't matter. Everything's in a mess," said Joann Gorczyca of Glenfield.

The tax hike is on the agenda Tuesday in Lowville.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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