Jacobs approves mortgage tax revenues for local villages

County to disperse nearly $46M to 64 Incorporated Villages

Mineola, NY – Nassau County Presiding Officer Judy Jacobs (D-Woodbury) recently approved a resolution to disperse more than $45M from Nassau County mortgage tax revenue to the County’s 64 incorporated villages. The following villages will receive: Cove Neck ($28,749); Laurel Hollow ($81,349); Muttontown ($150,252); and Oyster Bay Cove ($106,730).

“I am delighted that we can continue to offer our fiscal support and cooperation at a time when the villages really need it,” Jacobs said.

In other business, majority legislators approved a law giving certain first-time home buyers in Nassau County a break on their property tax bills. Homebuyers of newly constructed homes, who meet certain income requirements will receive an exemption off the county portion of their taxes of 50% in the first year, 40% in the second year, 30% in the third year, 20% in the fourth and 10% in the fifth. The exemption also applies to a renovation or remodeling of an existing home purchased by a first-time homebuyer, provided the costs exceed $3,000 and the contract for the work is contracted for within 90 days from day of purchase.

“This law will encourage first-time homebuyers to purchase their first home in Nassau County, rather than join the exodus of young people we hear about who are choosing to leave the area due to the high property taxes,” said Jacobs.

Legislators also approved a resolution empowering the Nassau County Attorney to support a lawsuit with Suffolk County to block a federal ruling that requires counties to buy new voting machines by next September. Suffolk County started a lawsuit against the New York State Board of Elections last month, stating that the state’s Election Reform and Modernization Act of 2005 would unnecessarily force counties to spend millions of dollars on new voting systems. The resolution, which went before the Legislature’s Rules Committee, received unanimous, bipartisan support.

The federal government’s Help America Vote Act (HAVA) requires that all voting machines and many of the voting procedures make voting easier, verifiable and more accessible to all residents. While some interpret this to mean that traditional “lever” voting machines be replaced by electronic or optical scan voting machines, Jacobs believes that federal and state do not necessarily require counties to replace traditional lever machines.

In another matter, legislators passed an amended law that will put more money in the pockets of thousands of home health aides employed by companies that contract with the county. Under the Living wage law, employees currently earning $8.50 an hour will get $9.50, starting on January 1, 2007. By August 1, 2010, they will be earning $12.50 an hour.

Legislators also approved the following supplemental appropriations:

$ 163,802 to the Police Department and Medical Examiner’s office for an Aid to Crime Lab Grant from the NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services for the purchase of laboratory equipment, consultant services, travel and training costs related to maintaining accreditation standards.

$ 48,278 for the Medical Examiner Office 

Grant from the National Institute of Justice is to provide funding for a Laboratory assistant to reduce case completion time and increase DNA capacity.

$ 24,222 for the Medical Examiner Office to address DNA backlogs.

Department of Behavioral Health & Developmental Disabilities Services.

$220,000 for the Dept. of Behavioral Health & Developmental Disabilities Services for services related to HIV at risk populations, particularly the intravenous drug abusers.

$17,278,114 for Drug Free Outpatient Grant to provide continued funding during for 32 community based agencies and hospitals providing chemical dependency services in a variety of patient settings. Additionally, it provides for the continued funding for 35 school based prevention and education chemical dependency programs for students and families.

The next legislative session will be on December 18 at 10 a.m.