State Budget Passes

State Budget Passes
April 1 2014

In this year’s New York State budget, which was passed last night in Albany, Governor Andrew Cuomo is promising lower taxes for those who live in cities, towns or villages whose leaders work towards consolidating local governments.

We asked Mayor Shawn Hogan if he thought consolidation would happen in the Canisteo Valley. Hogan says it ultimately will happen here, out of necessity. “I think for all of us to survive, whether it’s coupled with property taxes or not, it’s going to have to happen.”

The Hornell Mayor maintains that’s because within five miles around the Canisteo Valley, there are half a dozen local governments, all of which are taxing authorities.

Upstate lawmakers were pleased with parts of the budget, but not others. While Senator Tom O’Mara (R, Big Flats) and Assemblyman Phil Palmesano (R, Corning) liked the increase for CHIPS (consolidated highway funding), both were disappointed that there was nothing in the budget to save a prison facility in Schuyler County. “Together with our local leaders, Monterey employees, and former Monterey inmates and their families, we tried until the very end of this year’s budget negotiations to convince Governor Cuomo to keep Monterey Shock open. We made our case on the merits and on the undeniable facts that Monterey saves state and local taxpayer dollars, effectively reduces recidivism and turns lives around. The Cuomo administration refused to negotiate a better solution for the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes economy, local property taxpayers, local community services, and local workers and their families. It’s the wrong decision,” said Palmesano and O’Mara in a joint statement.