In a decisive display of civic engagement, New York voters have given their resounding approval to two pivotal statewide constitutional amendments related to debt in Tuesday’s elections.
The first constitutional amendment, which garnered strong support, eliminates the borrowing restrictions for school districts in smaller cities, specifically those with populations of fewer than 125,000 residents. Under the previous system, these smaller districts were limited to borrowing a mere 5% of the total taxable property value within their jurisdiction. In contrast, larger school districts had a significantly more lenient cap of twice that amount. With this new amendment, educational institutions in smaller cities will have greater flexibility in financing critical projects.
The second constitutional amendment, also met with widespread approval, streamlines the process for constructing and repairing sewage facilities by excluding these projects from the broader debt limits that govern local governments. This sewage facility exception has been in effect since its initial passage in 1963. However, it necessitates renewal every decade. The recent vote ensures that this vital exemption remains intact, facilitating essential infrastructure improvements in the state.
It is essential to note that both of these constitutional amendments have followed the established procedure for such changes. They were previously ratified by the state Legislature in two consecutive sessions and ultimately secured the essential stamp of approval from the voters. This democratic decision paves the way for critical developments in New York’s educational and infrastructure sectors, ultimately benefitting the entire state.