Keane Duncan has ruled out charging a new tax if he is elected in May.
The York & North Yorkshire Mayor will have power to add to council tax bills by an uncapped amount to fund new responsibilities such as transport and housing.
But Mr Duncan said the public should be reassured he will not charge a single penny in taxes for anything other than essential police and fire services if he secures the key role.
Under his plan, new functions will be funded from the £750m devolution deal and by leveraging private sector investment rather than via a new mayoral precept.
Mr Duncan said: “I can confirm I will charge you, the taxpayer, precisely zero pounds and zero pence for new mayoral responsibilities.
“I will not add to your council tax bills by asking you to pay for anything other than essential police and fire services.
“This will be the case this year and every year of my term as your mayor.”
He added: “With £750m of investment from central government secured by May’s mayoral election, I would have vital funding to begin unlocking growth, jobs and opportunities.
“And by investing this wisely to leverage private sector funding, I will ensure we turn every pound into several more.
“My approach means no new tax. No costly layer of bureaucracy. Just transformative investment in the future of York and North Yorkshire.”
North Yorkshire Police and North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service precepts are currently set by the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner.
This role will be abolished in May and the responsibilities transferred to the newly-elected mayor.
Only three regional mayors, all Labour, have chosen to use their powers to raise taxes to fund non-police and fire services: Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham and Mayor of Liverpool City Region Steve Rotherham.