Ulster County Executive Mike Hein unveiled his proposed 2013 budget at the Rosendale Recreation Center. YNN’s Alexandra Weishaupt has details on the budget designed to protect families, seniors and to solve a series of long-standing problems.
ULSTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Some good news for tax payers in Ulster County as Executive Mike Hein unveiled his 2013 budget.
Hein said, “It cuts property taxes for the first time in 10 years in Ulster County. It also takes on some of the very important issues.”
But in order to cut taxes and make changes possible, the budget includes laying off 28 employees at the county's Mental Health operation and the elimination of 62 additional positions. The proposed budget reduces spending by $3.6 million and adds a vehicle registration fee for all residents.
“There’s difficult decision included in this process, but ultimately, what we’re talking about is reshaping the government to serve the people of Ulster County,” Hein said.
Another change will be the county taking over the expense of the Safety Net program over the next three years, meaning an ease on local governments.
“Every other county in the state pays for Safety Net, except for Ulster County, so really, big news,” said Town of Wawarsing Supervisor Scott Carlsen.
It also highlights restructuring of the county’s economic development model with the formation of a new office of business services, a division within the county’s planning department.
“Moving the UC development corporation to in house is probably a strong positive and almost logical step,” said Ron Marquette, Chair of the Ulster County Development Corporation Board of Directors.
And to strengthen the county’s tourism economy, it layouts a plan to convert Ulster and Delaware rail beds into rail trails
“Ulster County is known for its natural resources and its recreational opportunities and the rail trails will do nothing but bolster that and tourism. That's what we want,” said Ulster County Tourism Director Rick Remsnyder.
The county legislature is to adopt a final spending plan for 2013 by December 4th.