Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States on Friday, while Mike Pence became the 48th Vice President.
President Trump’s speech focused on the promises he made during the campaign, including his promise that America will get better for everyone.
Executive Budget Released
Governor Cuomo released his $152.3 billion State budget proposal this week.
Major proposals in the budget include:
Governor Cuomo has reintroduced a proposal that would increase health insurance costs for future state retirees. Under the proposed plan, State contributions to the costs of health insurance premiums for retirees would be reduced for state employees that retiree on or after October 1, 2017. The proposal would create a tiered system of State contributions based on years of service and pay grade. CSEA fought to defeat this proposal last year and will do the same this year.
The Governor’s budget ignores the needs of the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD). The proposed budget fails to invest in needed services, including CSEA’s care pilot programs, and puts even more stress on a workforce that already works the most overtime out of any state agency.
The budget also continues to reduce services in the Office of Mental Health by calling for the closure of an additional 140 beds across the state. There are currently no details as to where these beds will be taken down.
The Governor has proposed a local government consolidation scheme that would require every County Executive or County Manager outside of New York City to prepare a plan for consolidating and eliminating services, which will be put to voters in the November 2017 election. CSEA will continue to oppose the Governor’s attempts to force the consolidation of local government services.
Aid and Incentives to Municipalities (AIM) funding for local governments will be held flat, as it has been since 2011-12.
The Executive Budget would extend the Millionaire’s Tax for an additional three years, but would raise the income threshold to $2,155,350 from the current $2 million. The proposal would keep in place the “middle class” tax cuts agreed to in the 2016-17 budget.
This week, voters in the Erie County Village of Depew voted against the dissolution of their village by nearly a three to one margin. Similar efforts in the Villages of Medina and Brockport have also been defeated in Western New York in recent years.
Time and again voters have shown that they value the services provided by their local governments and have rejected dissolution and consolidation efforts.
2017 School Property Tax Cap Announced
State Comptroller DiNapoli announced that the property tax cap for school districts will be 1.26% for the next school year. While this is a slight increase from last year, the tax cap continues to hurt the ability of local governments to provide the services that are demanded by the public.
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CSEA Local 1000 | 143 Washington Ave., Albany, NY, 12210