Yonkers, Mt Vernon, New Rochelle and Peekskill are the primary locations of low income affordable housing in Westchester County. These cities, with a majority-minority citizenry, are hosting the majority of Westchester County‘s low-income housing inventory.
Yonkers, where I live, hosts 40% of this inventory just on the west side of the City where the population is only 10% of the County’s total population. This has caused concern with home and business owners on the west side as we have finally realized that placing so many low income people in one area is doing to the economics and future of the area.
When checking the tax records of most of these properties we find that although the City Of Yonkers has a multi-million dollar deficit in our public schools, most of these projects pay no school tax. Now the average home owner in Yonkers pays between five to eight thousand dollars in school tax. But, most of the subsidized low-income properties pay no school tax. They pay very little, if any, City of Yonkers or County of Westchester property taxes. They do pay for solid waste and sewage but that is the extent of what I believe they pay.
So for instance, if we have a 150-unit housing development, they pay no tax. If you have a moderate single family home you will pay nine thousand dollars in taxes.
So we arrive at the questions for these citizens of these cities
Who pays for the cost generated by hosting all this low income housing? Is it born on the backs of the local homeowners, condos, co-ops, and small businesses?
Is the County stepping up to pay for the cost of everyday services like fire protection, police, and street cleaning? Or are the everyday cost of running these cities born by the local residents?
As election day approaches, we see television ads taking credit for the amount of affordable housing being brought to Yonkers. But, not a word about it all being relegated to just one side of our city.