For residents of Suffolk used to living in a county whose finances were in order, news this week of a $530 million budget deficit came as a shock. And they weren't alone.
After County Executive Steve Bellone on Tuesday declared a fiscal emergency, allowing him to immediately embargo up to 10 percent of funds in each County department’s budget, local legislators began assigning blame.
For starters, relative Democrative newcomer and a lax borrowing policy in the past.
"I’m not really a big proponent of borrowing money, I don’t feel like that’s the right thing to do, but unfortunately it has been done probably more than it should have," she said.
Legis. Jay Schneiderman, another Democrat, , and his staunch resistance to raising taxes.
In Dix Hills, came back to the county's pension problems. He said the county’s contributions increased by $200 million in 2010, and another $180 million in 2011. And since the new tax cap limits the amount of revenue the county can bring in, Stern said the state is going to have to step in and help to bridge the gap.
Meanwhile, Republican Legis. Ed Romaine focused on a local solution, that would sunset in four years.
So let us know in comments what you think needs to be done, and who is to blame for the county's fiscal mess.