Broome County Legislature adopts county budget

By Jillian Marshall

November 8, 2013 Updated Nov 8, 2013 at 1:20 AM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) The Broome County Legislature's 2014 budget includes a lower tax levy increase and the elimination of employee raises and positions.

But it maintains funding for two agencies that had been considered for sale to private companies.

The Broome County Legislature unanimously approved the spending plan Thursday night.

The legislature's finance committee worked for weeks to finalize the proposal submitted by Broome County Executive Debbie Preston earlier this year.

The nearly $375 million spending plan includes a tax levy increase of 1.77 percent.

Legislative Chairman Jerry Marinich said their work on the plan has cut at least $800,000 from the proposed budget.

Thursday night, the finance committee presented 11 initiatives, which include additional support to Willow Point Nursing Home and eliminating raises to Administrative I, Administrative II, and Attorney positions.

"We didn't go through with the raises this year, so that saved us some money," said legislative chairman Jerry Marinich. "We didn't go through with the merit pay, that saved us some money."

Marinich said the legislature worked well with county administrators, though he's unsure whether Preston will offer any vetoes.

"It's a budget that addresses a lot of issues around the county, and it keeps the tax levy as low as it possibly can so we don't have as much impact on property tax payers," said Deputy County Executive Bijoy Datta.

A second public hearing on the budget takes place Nov. 14. Preston will then decide whether to override anything the legislature has done.

The county has to adopt the budget by Nov. 27.

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