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Tompkins County 2018 Budget Adopted

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Tompkins County 2018 Budget Adopted

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Concluding a process that started at the beginning of September, the Tompkins County Legislature tonight adopted the County’s 2018 budget and the capital program for the next five years. The budget was approved by unanimous vote.

The $180 million budget increases the County tax levy by 2.32% and represents an increase in local spending of 2.87%. The tax rate of $6.58 per thousand is down by 4 cents (0.60%) from 2017, representing an increase of $11.42 in the tax bill for the median-valued $178,000 county home. The levy increase falls below the County’s tax cap of 3.53%, as calculated by New York State.

Before passage, one amendment was advanced by Legislator Dooley Kiefer, to approve $35,667 in over-target funding to increase the Weights and Measures inspector position from its current half-time status to full-time at 35 hours per week—a measure that, after discussion, failed to win support by a 6-8 margin (Legislators Anna Kelles, Carol Chock, Will Burbank, Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, Dave McKenna, and Dooley Kiefer voting in favor.) Several Legislators indicated their support for leaving the position as is for now, and for the next Legislature to examine it again as part of the 2019 budget.

Reflecting on the budget process, Legislator Rich John remarked that he continues to be impressed by the County’s thorough process and the amount of work it entails, that it represents a commitment of principles by the Legislature, showing that commitment with significant resources to housing and alternatives to incarceration.

Budget Chair Jim Dennis said the budget portrays the needs of the County very well and will satisfy the needs of county residents. Both he and County Administrator Mareane praised and recognized all involved—staff, departments, legislators—for their hard work and commitment throughout the budget process. “I remain pleased with the way this process works,” noted Administrator Mareane. “In the end, the result is worth it.”

See the overview of the 2018 adopted budget and all other budget documents on the budget page of the County website at  The full 2018 Adopted Budget will be posted there soon.