Comptroller Says More Needs To Be Done To Help Local Governments; Let NY Work Strongly Agrees
Leaders of the Let New York Work coalition said in a recent statement that they wholeheartedly agree with New York State Comptroller DiNapoli that local governments face significant obstacles in preparing their future budgets. However....
...simply sharpening pencils and "making informed decisions" won’t be enough. They will need the legislative leaders and the governor to make a serious commitment to meaningful mandate relief.
Let NY Work: A Common Agenda for the Common Good is a historic effort led by a coalition of prominent business, local government and educational organizations. Earlier this year, the group issued a six-point mandate relief agenda. Coalition members also worked with the Governor and Legislature on the Tier VI pension reform, a key component of their plan. Now the coalition wants the Legislature to get serious and adopt the remaining proposals before the end of this session.
“Comptroller DiNapoli, in his New Fiscal Realities Challenge Local Governments, did an excellent job of identifying what we have been saying for the past few months, that local governments are in trouble,” said Brian Sampson, executive director of Unshackle Upstate. “But it won’t be enough for local leaders to just review their budgets.
"We need our elected leaders at the state level to not only embrace our agenda but enact it into law. Doing so will provide both long and short-term savings for both municipal governments and school districts. And it will structurally change how we collectively bargain contracts and pay for public construction. Passing our agenda will help to ensure that we are able to afford the cost of necessary services from municipal government and that our kids receive an excellent education. And all without the need to slash public employment.”
The Let NY Work agenda includes calls to:
· Redefine compulsory arbitration · Control the costs of construction on public/private projects · Freeze step increases when contracts expire · Establish minimum health insurance contributions level for employees and retirees · Avoid the creation and/or implementation of any new mandates Accomplishing these goals will help stabilize New York’s economy and provide a sense of security for all taxpayers.
Food for thought. If you would like more information, please contact Amy Allen at the WCA.