Columnist decries failure to allow tax relief for parochial schools in New York
April 03, 2014
Writing in the New York Post, Seth Lipsky has lamented the failure of the New York state legislature to approve tax credits that would help parents of children in parochial schools.
The proposal for tax relief was originally approved by the legislature, but omitted from a final budget agreement. Lipsky reports that “there a sense the teachers’ union worked through Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver to kill it.”
The death of the proposal drew an angry reaction from New York’s Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who said that Catholic schools had been “kicked to the curb.” But Lipsky observes that not only Catholics are hurt:
One reason people are so upset is the long-simmering realization that, on a net basis, religious schools save New York taxpayers billions. If they didn’t exist, New Yorkers would have to pay a fortune.
Lipsky charges that New York’s refusal to provide relief for parochial-school parents is a legacy of the anti-Catholicism that flourished in the state more than a century ago. He writes that “it’s time to start addressing the legal legacy of the kind of bigotry that was turned on Catholic education in the 19th century.”