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Bloomy’s property tax plan draws criticism in boro

But the plan has drawn some skepticism from two Queens civic leaders who do not believe the cuts will actually result in savings because of increasing home values.But a city councilman from the borough said he believed the proposal would bring relief. "I've always said I wanted to cut property taxes and this year we can," Bloomberg said, noting that a 5 percent cut would result in a total of $750 million in savings.City Councilman David Weprin (D-Hollis), chairman of the Council's Finance Committee, called the mayor's proposal "a step in the right direction" but the 5 percent figure would be open to negotiations with the Council, which must approve the budget. "I think you will see savings because homeowners are also going to get a $400 rebate," he said.The city uses a complex formula for determining property taxes, which is based on whether the homes are one- to three-families, co-op apartments or commercial buildings. It bases the amount of tax on a percentage of a building's assessed value, which are yet to be released."That's going to be the real key Ð what the assessment rate will be," said Jack Friedman, Weprin's chief of staff.Weprin said he believed with market values for homes increasing, the assessment rate will follow. He noted much of the city's surplus is due to the booming real estate market.Bruno DeFrancheschi, president of the North Bellerose Civic Association, said he does not believe he will get any tax relief because he sees tax assessments as increasing, which would offset the decrease in property taxes."The whole thing is a farce," DeFrancheschi said of the mayor's proposal. "Bottom line Ð we're going to have an increase. I really don't like the idea."Bob Harris, the president of the West Cunningham Park Civic Association, said property tax rates should be adjusted to home prices."The key was giving us 5 percent, but we're going up 12 or 15 percent" because of increasing home values, Harris said.Bloomberg outlined other tax-related proposals in his address, including tax cuts for small business and eliminating sales tax on all clothing and footwear.The mayor is expected to propose his budget Thursday.Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e-mail at or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 173.

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