New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is waging an all-out assault on the GOP tax law

  • New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Thursday that he is considering challenging the constitutionality of the GOP tax law in court. 
  • He's also taking action to help New Yorkers circumvent a new cap on state and local tax deductions. 
  • But time is running out. The tax bill will take effect on Monday. 


New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is fighting back against the GOP tax bill signed into law by President Donald Trump last week after months of legislative wrangling on Capitol Hill. 

Cuomo is specifically targeting a change to the so-called SALT deduction, which currently allows high-income taxpayers in states like New York and California who itemize their deductions to benefit from an unlimited deduction on state and local taxes. Under the new Republican bill, that SALT deduction is now capped at $10,000.  

“We’re going to propose a restructuring of our tax code," Cuomo said in an interview with CNN on Thursday. "I‘m not even sure what [Republicans] did is legally constitutional and that’s something we’re looking at now."

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9 states where taxpayers get a high return on their tax investment
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9 states where taxpayers get a high return on their tax investment

9. Texas

Total taxes paid per capita rank: 12

Overall government services rank: 28

Source: WalletHub

8. Missouri

Total taxes paid per capita rank: 5

Overall government services rank: 37

Source: WalletHub

7. Utah

Total taxes paid per capita rank: 18

Overall government services rank: 10

Source: WalletHub

6. Colorado

Total taxes paid per capita rank: 14

Overall government services rank: 11

Source: WalletHub

5. Alaska

Total taxes paid per capita rank: 1

Overall government services rank: 50

Source: WalletHub

4. Virginia

Total taxes paid per capita rank: 15

Overall government services rank: 8

Source: WalletHub

3. Florida

Total taxes paid per capita rank: 3

Overall government services rank: 34

Source: WalletHub

2. South Dakota

Total taxes paid per capita rank: 9

Overall government services rank: 16

Source: WalletHub

1. New Hampshire

Total Taxes Paid per Capita rank: 2

Overall Government Services rank: 5

Source: WalletHub

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In a subsequent tweet, Cuomo called the tax bill "partisan" and said he believes that the cap on SALT is punishment for tax payers in overwhelmingly Democratic states. 

Circumventing the president's changes

Even though Cuomo is considering a potential legal challenge against Trump's tax bill, he has already taken action.

On Friday, he issued an executive order allowing local governments in New York to issue tax warrants for 2018 property tax payments, thereby giving property owners the chance to pay at least a portion of their overall bill before Monday, when the law takes effect.

"We’re doing this to circumvent the bill the president just signed?" Cuomo said at a press conference on Friday. "You’re damn right I am."

Anticipating significant financial losses, homeowners across the country have been rushing to prepay their property taxes in recent days before the tax bill goes live on Monday. 

From Virginia to Massachusetts, and New York to California, municipalities — mostly in areas with higher levels of state and local income taxes — have seen a stunning increase in property-tax receipts.

"It's been insane here," James McAuliffe, the town treasurer in Milton, Massachusetts, told The Wall Street Journal

McAuliffe estimated that roughly half of Milton's residents would be affected by the new $10,000 cap. The limit also covers state and local income and sales taxes, but the bill prohibits people from prepaying those taxes. Lawmakers left the prepayment of property taxes up to local municipalities.

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Andrew Cuomo
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Andrew Cuomo
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and girlfriend Sandra Lee look on as Pope Francis tours Our Lady Queen of Angels School in East Harlem in New York, September 25, 2015. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
New York state Governor Andrew Cuomo waves as he arrives to speak on the fourth and final night at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S. July 28, 2016. REUTERS/Jim Young
Democratic U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton (2nd R) gestures to the crowd as she takes part in the Memorial Day parade with former U.S. President Bill Clinton (L) and New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo (R) in Chappaqua, New York, U.S. May 30, 2016. REUTERS/Adrees Latif TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (L) shakes hands with James Dolan, Executive Chairman of The Madison Square Garden Company following a press conference to announce major transportation initiatives in the Manhattan borough of New York, January 6, 2016. Cuomo promised the "largest investment in upstate New York in history, period" promising a $22 billion investment in bridges and roads as he aims to reverse years of decline in the rustbelt north of New York City. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden appears with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on the stage at an event to discuss the economy at the Javitz Convention Center in New York, September 10, 2015. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks during a "Raise the Wage" rally in New York May 7, 2015. Governor Cuomo said on Wednesday he would create a so-called Wage Board, a move apparently designed to allow him to raise the minimum wage without the approval of state lawmakers. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (L) and Archbishop of Havana Cardinal Jaime Ortega shake hands in Havana April 20, 2015. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo met senior Cuban officials in Havana on Monday as the head of a high-powered business delegation looking to take advantage of President Barack Obama's easing of restrictions with the Communist-led island. Cuomo, a Democrat, is the first governor to visit Cuba since a December announcement by Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro that they would restore diplomatic relations and work to normalize trade and travel ties after more than a half century of hostility and confrontation. REUTERS/Enrique de la Osa
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo stands with his mother Matilda and other members of his family as he watches the casket of his late father, former New York Governor Mario Cuomo, being carried into St. Ignatius Loyola Church for funeral service in the Manhattan borough of New York, January 6, 2015. Mario Cuomo, the three-time governor of New York and a leading voice of the Democratic Party's liberal wing who turned down several invitations to seek the U.S. presidency, died on January 1 at his home in Manhattan. He was 82. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS OBITUARY)
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and his partner Sandra Lee depart the wake for slain New York Police Department officer Wenjian Liu in the Brooklyn borough of New York January 3, 2015. Liu, 32, and Rafael Ramos, 40, were shot to death on December 20 as they sat in their squad car in Brooklyn. Their killer, Ismaaiyl Brinsley, who killed himself soon after, had said he was seeking to avenge the deaths this summer of two unarmed black men at the hands of white police officers REUTERS/Carlo Allegri (UNITED STATES - Tags: SOCIETY CIVIL UNREST CRIME LAW)
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In response to the surge in prepayments, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued an advisory notice to taxpayers on Wednesday, warning them that gaming the system by prepaying their property taxes will only work if those taxes are paid and assessed in 2017. This means that some people who rushed to prepay property taxes that have not yet been assessed actually won't end up avoiding the new SALT deduction cap after all.  

"Those individuals now are not getting the benefits of those prepayments," Nicole Kaeding, a tax expert, told The New York Times. "All that you’ve done is provided an interest-free loan to your municipal government."

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