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Astorino Unveils $1.6B Westchester Budget Plan; 210 Layoffs Proposed

Spending cuts would hit parks and other services.

Westchester County Executive Robert Astorino today unveilled a $1.689 billion 2012 budget proposal that will layoff 210 county workers, make various cuts to parks and other services and maintain a zero increase in the tax levy.

But the numbers alone don’t tell the full story of the economic landscape for next year’s budget and the Astorino’s press conference was just one step in active and contentious process.

“This is obviously my second budget and it follows the same principals that I used to govern and we used for our first budget and that is to provide tax relief for essential services as well as for providing economic growth,” Astorino said.

Although the tax levy would remain the same at $548 million, Astorino’s proposal represents a budget-to-budget decrease of $100 million.

Some of the cuts in the proposal include:

  • Layoffs of 210 employees and 367 total job eliminations.
  • The county Health Department’s budget would decrease 3 percent to $160 million. This means the county would end its contracts with the Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center, Hudson River Healthcare in Peekskill, and the Open Door Family Medical Center in Port Chester for a savings of $1.9 million.
  • The budget would also eliminate the county’s funding for the Cornell Cooperative Extension, which amounts to $990,000, and reduce ArtsWestchester Grant by $750,000, or 50 percent.

The County Board of Westchester has until Dec. 27 to approve a final budget for 2012. 

Ross Revira November 17, 2011 at 03:42 AM
Paul, before you look at corruption at the county level start with cleaning up Greenburgh's own mess. How much has the court lost $1,000,000? The judges were the primary reason but YOU could have stopped it by cutting their budget. You did not.
Stuy Guy November 17, 2011 at 05:04 AM
Conservative Ideology above all else. If Astorino cut the supply of oxygen to residents, the conservatives would salute him. Anything to advance the anti-government ideology.
Blue November 17, 2011 at 11:56 AM
Ar, Why do you have to end a perfectly legitimate statement with a sarcastic remark? What the reports say and my impression of the people running those rides over the years are different. I saw lack of care everwhere when I used to go nevermind the packs of teens left unchecked. Now to your sarcastic point. How is $3 per household no big deal for Playland but according to Dem. Greenburgh "For Greenberg, raising child-care fees on the working poor even just a few dollars a day could double that cost and force families to utilize other social programs like welfare". How is this possible? Are we all not a bottomless pit of tax money? Apparently every household in the county cannot afford the $3 so your rationalization doesn't hold up. See below my comment on subsidizing everything. I don't use either but I'd rather subsidize child care. If Playland can't sustain itself or be profitable entity ( like county golf) it should be leased out or sold off. IMHO
Billy L November 17, 2011 at 01:14 PM
I hate to have to break it to you but the golf courses are NOT profitable. The reason being is that when the golf course fairways were renovated the county bonded (borrowed money) and STILL pays interest on that debt according to the budget books. But these interest payments are paid for by the park dept general fund whereas Playland's debt servicing is picked up by the park's bottom line itself. EVERY county owned park, golf course, pool, etc...LOSES money. You speak of child care services to the poor. That's not my issue. The county built Playland in 1928 and has owned it since. We can do better to run it, for example the right private company that will restore it and add attractions. Child care services is in my humble opinion FARTHER outside the scope of county government than Playland is. You'll never get me to change my opinion on that.
Francis T McVetty November 17, 2011 at 01:26 PM
Stuy Guy, it is NOT anti-government, it is TOO big government!!! The only oxygen cut off that has happened is to the Weschester county legislators .You can see what a lack of oxygen can do to someone and their decision making.

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