Updated 09/20/2012 10:39 PM
County lawmakers want tax cap lifted
Schenectady County legislators have an initial meeting to discuss the first step toward lifting the county's two percent tax cap. This comes just days before County Manager Kathleen Rooney's budget proposal is due. Maria Valvanis has more.
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SCHENECTADY COUNTY, N.Y. -- Schenectady County legislators are requesting a meeting to discuss lifting the two percent tax cap for the 2013 budget.
Legislators agreed to hold a public hearing next Friday on whether to allow the county manager to present a 2013 budget exceeding the two percent tax cap levy. With the cost of state mandated programs and services rising, County Manager Kathleen Rooney says she sees no way around raising the cap without making some serious cuts.
In order to present the budget to voters, the Schenectady County legislature must pass a supermajority vote at next week's public hearing.
One resident criticized the county for not making itself available to hear the concerns of other residents.
"I’m not surprised. I mean, it's seven at night, it's on a Thursday. I mean, that's what they do. It is not on regular, typical, budget hearing times and it should be done at a county legislative meeting," Schenectady County resident Jason Planck said.
Rooney said, "It's just getting tighter and tighter and tighter and so we're going to be working around the clock to try and find as many opportunities and things we can change to reduce costs, but it’s just getting tighter and tighter and we're just looking for the option to present something over the cap because it's so tight."
Rooney is obligated to submit the budget by October 1st, which is just three days after the scheduled public hearing.