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         October 25, 2001

Proposal Cuts Spending by more than $35 Million

(Mineola, NY) Minority Leader Peter J. Schmitt (R-Massapequa) on behalf of his Republican colleagues in the Nassau County Legislature is advancing an alternative budget proposal that cuts more than $35 million from the budget submitted by the County Executive. The budget modification implements the first of a phased-in reduction of the General Fund subsidy to the Police Headquarters Fund to truly reflect the cost of police services.

"This proposal cuts spending and addresses the concerns raised by the Comptroller, the Independent Legislative Budget Review Office and NIFA with respect to the proposed 2002 budget," said Minority Leader Schmitt. "This budget provides resources for our departments, but requires management to manage. We are confident that the new Administration will work hard to ensure that the County government adheres to these strict spending guidelines."

The Republican proposal recommends the following:

  • Cuts spending by more than $35 million through a 5 % spending cut in non-reimbursable General Fund departments and cuts in other Funds
  • Eliminates 25 patronage positions saving $1.9 million
  • Rolls back the salary increase given to the Commissioner and Deputy Commissioners of Police
  • Implements a leave program to reduce the number of County employees saving $2.8 million
  • Eliminates the Commissioner of Accounts
  • Merges Affirmative Action, CASA, Women's Services into the Office of Minority Affairs
  • Proposes two alternative uses of the $27.8 million in surplus funds to pay down debt and/or fund a contingency fund
  • Implements the phased-in elimination of the General Fund subsidy to the Police Headquarters Fund

"Nassau County has much more work to do to bring structural stability to the County's finances. We must remain steadfast in our commitment to undertake the difficult, but necessary spending cuts to ensure the long-term fiscal health of the County government," concluded Legislator Schmitt.

NIFA indicated that there were $55.3 million in "at risk" items in the County Executive's proposed budget. The Republican proposal would produce a surplus if the spending plan is strictly adhered to.

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