Budget Under NYS Property Tax Cap
County Executive Ed Day signed the Resolution adopting Rockland County’s 2020 Budget which contained amendments from the Legislature. These amendments did not result in any additional increase in taxes from the County Executive’s Proposed Budget. The Budget was adopted by a 15-2, bipartisan vote of the Legislature on Tuesday, December 3.
“This budget holds the line on spending, keeping under the NYS property tax cap, while we continue to invest in the County’s critical infrastructure needs and meet the demands of an additional $4.5 million in New York State mandates. These mandates are the equivalent of a 3.5 percent property tax increase all on their own,” said County Executive Day. “I want to commend all the Legislators for their efforts and particularly wish to acknowledge Budget and Finance Chairman Jay Hood and Minority Leader Lon Hofstein.”
The $729.9 million budget is under the NYS property tax cap and calls for a 2.879 percent property tax increase. On average this increase is approximately $3 per month for a property tax owner.
The Legislative Amendments include three new positions in the District Attorney’s Office, First Assistant DA, Crime Prevention Aide and an ITS Specialist, which are necessary to implement the criminal justice “reforms” passed by New York State this year.
“This Budget sets the stage for the continued renewal and revitalization of County government with significant money set aside to invest in the Pomona Health Complex and in a new Animal Care Facility for Hi Tor,” said Day.
The Budget provides an additional $5.7 million in funding in the 2020 Capital Project Budget for Hi Tor bringing the total project cost to $8.25 million which includes significant funding from State grants and donations.
“Having the county take the leadership role on this shared service with the Towns means the Towns will not have the burden of building their own shelters or finding alternative plans at a significant cost. This is a clear savings for residents and a great thing for the animals we all care about,” said Day.
Rockland County’s finances continue to improve with its Unassigned Fund Balance growing to just over $32 million in 2018. The difficult decisions made over the last 6 years are paying dividends with Rockland County receiving it’s tenth consecutive bond upgrade to A from A- from Fitch Ratings. The County’s improving fiscal health has allowed it to recently settle outstanding contracts with Rockland’s largest unions.
“Everyone deserves fair pay for their work, and it is thanks to the people here in County government that we have achieved this near-miraculous financial recovery. I support the amendments passed by the Legislature and look forward to working closely with them in 2020 and beyond. Together we will continue to work towards building our fund balance to the approximately $56 million recommended by the NYS Comptroller through careful budgeting and smart compromises that will help Rockland County prosper,” concluded County Executive Day.
PRESS RELEASE FROM OFFICE OF COUNTY EXECUTIVE