Barbara Fiala Brings Budget to Binghamton

By Matt Porter
By Natalie Rubino

January 23, 2013 Updated Jan 24, 2013 at 12:28 AM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Former Broome County Executive Barbara Fiala presented the governor's state budget to community leaders.

Fiala presented the governor's plan to local municipal leaders from across the Southern Tier.

Town supervisors and mayors said they are happy the governor is putting an emphasis on developing businesses in upstate through the regional economic councils.

However, they said their towns are still struggling making their own budgets, while keeping to the governor's property tax caps.

One attendee was a little upset that towns and villages are strictly monitored to stay within their means, but the state is not.

Others, like town of Binghamton Supervisor Tim Whitesell, said he will do what he can to find savings and work with the governor's plan.

"We're in the process of considering consolidated efforts with our neighboring community, the town of Conklin," Whitesell said. "So we're always looking at ideas and possibilities to cut costs."

The biggest concern was mandate relief for struggling towns and villages.

The new budget gives municipalities the ability to opt into a tiered pension system that could provide for early savings.

"The good part and as a former county executive that budgeting is very important and this way they will know what that will cost, and what the increase will be, and they'll know how to budget," Fiala said.

Cuomo said yesterday although the state can't be a piggy bank for municipalities, he is committed to doing what he can to help those that are struggling.