Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo released her 2019 budget proposal on Thursday, a $1.2 billion spending plan that Dinolfo says will cut taxes for the first time in a decade. The budget will cut the tax rate by ten cents, from $8.99 to $8.89 per thousand of assessed value.
Dinolfo says that will save taxpayers more than $4 million.
She continues to criticize the amount of the budget that goes to state mandate costs, which Dinolfo says makes up about 85 percent of the county’s total spending for the coming year.
Dinolfo mentioned that concern in connection with mandated costs related to the new ‘raise the age’ state legislation regarding criminal prosecution of young adults.
She asked county lawmakers to put the pressure on state government.
"That’s why I’m counting on everybody in this room, both sides of the aisle, all my legislative partners, to help me hold Albany accountable on its promise to reimburse when the time comes. It’s the right thing to do for the taxpayers, not only in Monroe County, but throughout the State of New York."
Monroe County officials say next year’s proposed budget balances spending through a combination of cost controls, and things like savings from the effective management of county health care costs.
County Democratic Legislative minority leader Cindy Kaleh says that while the drop in the tax rate is always welcome, the county tax levy, has steadily increased. She also chided the Republican county administration for cutting some retiree insurance benefits, and according to Kaleh, providing fewer health inspectors, as well as issues involving child protective services.
Dinolfo says the budget calls for adding 30 new caseworker aides next year and says in the coming year, Monroe County will invest more than $560 million on programs and services that benefit local children and families.
Dinolfo also says the new budget reduced the county's two-year forecasted structural deficit by $8 million to $28.4 million. The proposed budget will be considered for adoption by county lawmakers at their December meeting.