Rockland County Legislature Sets Budget Review Sessions With An Eye Toward Bipartisan Efforts

Rockland County Legislators will launch their review of the County Executive’s proposed 2023 County Budget at 7:15 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 11. A public hearing on the budget is set for 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 14.

Rockland County Executive Ed Day’s proposed $870 million 2024 County Budget includes a 2 percent decrease in the property tax, and additional funding for nonprofit agencies; for college tuition assistance for volunteer firefighters and emergency responders; and for veterans’ patriotic observances. The budget also includes funding for an enhanced 911 system for mental health response, new open space acquisitions, and infrastructure improvements.

“We want to do our best to engage in a detailed review of the County Executive’s proposed budget because it is the blueprint for how county government operations will be carried out not only for 2024, but into the immediate future years,” Rockland County Legislature Budget & Finance Chairman Aron Wieder said. “So far, it seems to be a good foundation and I look forward to working with the CE’s office, the department heads, and my legislative colleagues in a bipartisan effort to adopt the best budget possible for our residents and businesses.”

Rockland County Legislator Michael Grant, Vice Chair of the Budget & Finance Committee, said county government had made great strides in the past decade in terms of improving its financial standing.

“We don’t want to back down from the effort because it took a lot of sacrifice to get here,” Legislator Grant said. “As we continue to move forward, we should do so cautiously, not only because the economy is still somewhat unsteady, but because we don’t want to experience the difficulties of the past.”

Rockland County Legislature Chairman Jay Hood Jr. said he is hopeful the improvements to county finances will allow important work to be accomplished – everything from infrastructure projects to more efficient delivery of services to residents and businesses.

“We can see that the careful management of the budget for the last several years has allowed us to begin making infrastructure changes that were desperately needing, including the construction of the new fire and emergency services operations building,” Chairman Hood said. “But the economy that existed before the pandemic has changed. People work differently now and people expect to connect to services differently now. We have to make sure county government measures up.”

Chairman Hood said he and other legislators are committed to continue building on the successes of the past several budgets, including the 2023 and 2022 plans, each of which had a zero property tax increase; and the elimination of additional taxes, similar to what was done when county government eliminated both the motor vehicle tax and the residential energy sale tax.

BUDGET REVIEW 

Note: Any changes to meeting dates will be posted on the Legislature’s government webpage and social media platforms.

● Wednesday, Oct. 11, 7:15 p.m., Budget Presentation by Rockland County Finance Department

● Thursday, Oct. 19, 6 p.m., Budget Review

● Tuesday, Oct. 24, 7:15 p.m., Budget Review

● Thursday, Nov. 2, 6 p.m., Budget Review

● Wednesday, Nov. 8, 7:15 p.m., Budget Review

● Tuesday, Nov. 14, 7 p.m., full Legislature Meeting and Public Hearing on Budget

● Thursday, Nov. 16, 6 p.m., Budget Review

● Tuesday, Nov. 28, 7:15 p.m., Budget Review

● Monday, Dec. 4, 6 p.m., Adoption of Financial Schedules

● Tuesday, Dec. 5, 7 p.m., Full Legislature Meeting and Vote to Adopt Budget.

KEY BUDGET DATES

● Public Hearing: 7 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 14

● Vote to Adopt Budget: 7 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 5

If the Legislature takes no action by Dec. 7, the budget is deemed adopted. If the Legislature amends the proposed budget, it goes to the County Executive for review. He has five working days after receipt of the amended version to issue any vetoes. He has line-item veto power.

● Legislature Override Deadline: By Dec. 20 or the amended version with any vetoes becomes the budget. It takes a two-thirds vote per veto item to override a veto (Two-thirds is 12 votes).

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