Before we all threaten to move, lets look at the problem. Albany conveniently eliminated a lot of their expenses and dropped them on local communities. Then tell them they can't raise taxes. .HMM.. Then they all(Politicians) get on the soap box bragging about the State having a Balanced Budget on Time.. What we need to look at SERIOUSLY, and not just go through the vocal political speeches, is Privatizing the Nursing Home, the Jail, and anything else we can't afford. We as a community and State also need to look at who all these people are on Medicaid, and see if they really need to be there. Can Obamacare relieve some of it?? Are many there that shouldn't be?? Why can't they get a job?? Can we help get them one? If not, is there something they can do to save the County money?? I am tiried of paying paying and paying, and hear that everybody's broke and we need more taxes..
County may need to exceed property tax cap to cover state-mandated expenses
Submitted by Howard Owens on October 18, 2013 - 8:27am
In effort to keep pace with increased expense demands, the County Legislature may need to pass a budget resolution overriding the state's cap of a 2-percent increase on the tax levy, according to County Manager Jay Gsell.
Gsell is recommending an increase to $10.11 per thousand of assessed value, up from the current $9.89 and increasing the total levy by $527,000.
A property tax increase that keeps levy below the cap level would add only $353,000 in revenue.
The total county spending plan, including local and mandated expenses is $149,100,167.
Even though all county departments turned in discretionary budgets that hold the line on local spending, state mandates expenses continue to test the county's ability to generate sufficient revenue to balance the budget.
The big budget issues are the Genesee County Jail, with a state-mandated increase in corrections officers, and the County Nursing Home, with $18.5 million in "heavily mandated" expenses that continue to drain the county's general fund.
Since the state refuses to provide mandate relief or pay the expense of its mandates, a full 71 percent of the county's tax levy goes to these mandated programs.
One of the largest expenses is the $9.96 million in local share of Medicaid.
The county's revenue projections for 2014 includes an anticipated 9-percent increase in sales tax revenue.
To read the full budget message, click here.
Fred, Obama Care actually expands Medicaid, in fact if it hadn't been for a supreme court decision in 2012, Obama Care would have required Medicaid for anyone who makes 133% of the arbitrary poverty line. Fortunately, as a result of that decision, States are not bound to follow that mandate
You did however raise excellent points. Privatization is often a better solution however, perhaps placing the onus on the State to effect privatization would be a more effective approach then placing that burden on the counties. Easing some regulations and strengthening others at the state level would far better accommodate the counties to make those decisions.
Hard to believe that no where in the Gsell budget does he cut the size of the county government...
Mark, Email him and ask that question. He has always responded to my emails and questions. I would guess that they have their hand tied by Union Contracts, and more State Mandates. How Albany gets away with telling us how many correction Officers we need is beyond me. Next they'll be telling us how many cooks we need at the Nursing Home(If they already haven't) That's the problem with too much government, it breeds more Government. That's why so many have left, and higher Taxes will not stop the exodus.... See you in Florida.
I could never understand how any county could continue to fund a nursing home, or health clinic, whose expenses tax the budget considerably every year.
Privatization of the county nursing home would free up that $18.5 million, which could be used in other areas of the budget. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure this out.
The Legislature should begin to put a plan in motion to end county funding of the nursing home, and turn it over to a private interest.
They can also cut expenses in the budget by ridding themselves of county owned vehicles that get 20 MPG or less, i.e. SUV's, and allow the Sheriff's Dept. to keep one SUV in the fleet. The gas guzzling vehicles can be replaced with more fuel efficient, or even hybrid vehicles.
The Legislators themselves could take a cut in pay, just saying.