The Honorable Chair and Members of the Schenectady County Legislature
Kathleen Rooney, County Manager
October 1, 2012_____________________________________________________________________________
We present to you the 2013 Tentative County Operating and Capital Budgets.The 2013 budget appropriation totals $296,038,600. This reflects a 0.26% increase in appropriations ascompared to 2012, far below 1% and even further below the rate of inflation. We have worked hard tocontain costs yet maintain basic services.Between 2009 and 2012, Schenectady County has not raised taxes and in fact reduced taxes more than2%. We reduced property taxes for the past three years and absorbed $14M in the growth in mandatedcosts through cuts in spending, cost avoidance, revenue maximization projects and through the use of County savings to provide relief to the property taxpayer.Unfortunately the cumulative increase in mandated costs since 2009 has grown again and is now $17Mgreater than it was in 2009. This increase is exclusive of increases in mandated obligations such asincreases in employee health insurance. The 2013 budget has many service reorganizations; serviceefficiencies, contract reductions and position attritions resulting in $5.5M in cost-savings. However, thecontinued growth in mandated costs is now at a level that surpasses our ability to absorb them on anongoing basis. The 2013 proposed budget includes an increase in the tax levy to $69,256,955, reflecting a7.49% increase over the 2012 levy to pay for a portion of the growth in mandated costs.The proposed 2013 property tax levy is up 4.99% when compared to 2009. This is 4.99% over a fouryear period.
The proposed 2013 County levy increase equates to a 1.23% annual average increase since 2009
This is far below New York State’s property tax cap. Since 2009, unlike most municipalities,Schenectady County has not increased taxes each year but in fact reduced taxes 2% in 2010 and kept thetaxes flat in 2011 and 2012.An average home in Schenectady County with a market value of $100,000 will pay approximately $47more in County property taxes next year. An average home with a market value of $150,000 will see anapproximate $71 increase in County taxes next year. This is the first increase in Schenectady Countytaxes since 2009.
New York State mandated program costs and mandated retirement system costs consume 84% of the totalproperty and sales tax revenues retained by the County. As these mandated costs go up, the majority of
County of Schenectady
Office of the County Manager
620 State StreetSchenectady, New York 12305Phone: (518) 388-4355Fax: (518) 388-4590