Ed Day, Rockland County Executive


March 6, 2017
Contact: Jane Lerner, Director of Strategic Communications
Office of the County Executive (845) 638-5645

Rockland County Executive Vetoes Resolution With Suspect Funding

NEW CITY, NY – Rockland County Executive Ed Day has vetoed a resolution regarding a contract that he negotiated with the sheriff's deputies because the funding to pay for it relied on unrealistic revenue projections and placed the county's finances at risk.

"This is not an action I wanted to take," the County Executive said. "But I was elected to make the best decision for all of Rockland County and I will not allow this county to repeat the sins of the past."

During his administration, the county's deficit has shrunk from $138 million to a projected $10 million. Day has cut spending 9 percent, saving taxpayers $67 million. He has held the line on taxes and stayed within a very strict 1.17 percent state property tax cap.

Day challenged the Legislature to vote only on the contract, not on the suspect funding that the majority has proposed.

"Let us see where you really stand," Day said. "If you care about our heroes in blue, stop playing games with their livelihood and approve the contract that we negotiated."

His administration again on March 1 forwarded to the Legislature a resolution to approve the contract with the sheriff's deputies. The resolution included a fiscally prudent plan to fund $1.3 million in back pay as part of the settlement.

"We had a deal with the union and a way to pay for it," he said. "Why would the Democratic majority reject it and replace it with an irresponsible plan that puts the entire county's finances at risk?"

The Democratic majority in the Rockland County Legislature attempted to fund the contract irresponsibly by:

• Relying on $1.1 million more in sales tax revenue than both the state Comptroller and the Rockland Finance Commissioner said we are going to receive
• Taking $50,000 that the County Executive took from his own mailing budget and specifically earmarked for nonprofit agencies
• Eliminating an Inspector General position to investigate corruption and make sure taxpayers get what they are paying for
• Haphazardly cutting positions over the objections of department heads who had submitted well-thought out plans during the budget process. One was filled by a military wife and another was a vacant position that the daughter of a legislator applied for but did not get.

The county attorney maintained that the Legislature cannot change the appropriations in a resolution from what was submitted by the County Executive. The County Charter does not grant the Legislature the authority to make line item transfers in a budget modification outside the annual budget process.

Day said that he will not allow the county's finances and its bond rating to be jeopardized by the irresponsible actions of the Democrat majority in the Legislature.

"We are not going to turn back the clock," he said. "I will not allow this county's finances to be put at risk again after we have worked so hard to recover from years of smoke-and-mirrors fiscal tricks."