Notes from Public Hearing:
Schools 3 so far committed
If find savings, gov match savings – Only get match money in the first yr
Merger expenses can negate savings in the first year
July determine recommendations and send by 7/15(?) see photo below
Town supervisors meet 3 times June 1, 29 and July
Savings may include workforce reduction
Inquired about getting meeting notes, they are not yet ready
Town Supervisors met and came up with :
1 consolidated ambulances- centralized does not have to be every town
2 shared legal svcs most towns contractual pay hrly rate
3 employee training tech/sex harassment/etc
4 merger of cable franchise agreements / raise franchise fees at this time / set up fund to expand internet access from franchise fees
5 grant writers state and foundations
6 animal control
7 consolidated street lights 27 districts in county not pkg lots etc convert to LEDs different ownership some towns own pole others / Central Hudson own bulb or bulb and wire etc., reduce bills? Net savings?
8 town hall heating, water, parks maintenance
IT / engineering etc – 375 computers
Payroll and accounting systems towns piggyback on county systems software
Property code enforcement
Better product by consolidating?
Property tax collection/clerk
Voter referendum for change of already elected clerks
Banks do for free get rid of tax collector and pay at bank
Tax assessor some doing multiple towns already – six years term – referendum for county wide NEED revaluation of home taxes- expensive updated on line mass appraisal- entire county 34000 properties 4-5year project cost $, monumental exercise get a better product?
Snow plowing – and school districts some contract out – can schools be added to road – timing can they-get rid of highway departments-how put together cost analysis- vehicles materials buildings getting to all needed first, fund in advance
Health- 12 mill self insured entity -health care collective consortium current/group purchasing
Tompkins county Ithaca consolidated save 3mill /yr / collective bargaining, would all care stay same? Towns will save money
Approval from state and pre fund
All same plan fund in advance
Records management- shift to online data and central storage and then old data archival effort guidelines for number of years kept, doesn’t need to be on paper
Consolidated courts unified system reduce number of referendum needed complex costs small towns wasting money
Lots of work required
Panelists – Town Supervisors
Come back with more ideas
Towns have to defend decision to not participate / Catskill won’t participate in ambulance consolidation
Home rule – want it so put it on tax rolls for town
Town police overlaps with sheriff and state police
Local towns police Needed?
Where does it make sense and how do you get consensus? Problem with ambulance 3 yrs
?s – Quality reduces? Efficiency? Lose service via consolidation? Money saved vs other negative impacts
80perct of taxes unfounded / government mandate true?
260 miles of county roads to maintain we can’t do all because of low money
Gov mandates without funding… true? (Say’s $ to be paid to counties is in State Budget that is not approved, will the $ get approved? When, after the work is done? Will this $ be removed? Depends on next Governor elected in fall 2018
Anne shared data of school shared services
Use resources better-ex: food service better product bulk purchase so reduced cost
Special ed teacher cover multiple districts
650 sq miles
Schools already doing and savings
Piggy back service
Volume procurement saves money
Once consolidated –
Who do you complain to?
Save money one yr or every year?
Towns come together based on area/logistics?
Who chooses governing org of each group?
How is public involved in decision making?
Next year go thru same exercise – why?
Two year program
Short time period 45days too tight
Not a collective refund
3rd part comes in to do evaluation
14towns have tax levy -money needed for expenses
Warrant completely colllected
County prints bill town sends and collects it
Towns get money first ?
Who gets refund from State? How divide?
Elections charge back to towns for costs , stop doing
Incentives for 2nd home purchase 2nd home owner taxes reduced?
County chases tax payment
Take away jobs and money going into county?
Assessing properties –
County would have to become assessing authority by referendum on ballot
If county takes over
Assessing is not collection
Start collecting data now
Do biggest cost savings first
Code enforcement use ny state rules but consolidated
Planning board zoning board environmental consolidation?
Is there a mandate for services to be cut from taxes if consolidated?
Not better product just tax reduction?
Where is money coming from?
Subcommittee to cooperate with Columbia county?