MENU

      Mahoney calls county budget cuts 'irresponsible'

      Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney calls the changes to the budget enacted by the Ways and Means committee 'irresponsible'. She promises to veto certain parts of the proposals.

      Thursday night, the Onondaga County Legislature's Ways and Means committee enacted a series of cuts and revenue enhancements that would change Mahoney's overall budget by $50 million. The county executive intends to veto certain increases to the budget.

      Committee members are recommending increasing the estimated sales tax revenue to the county beyond what Mahoney considers reasonable.

      In addition, Mahoney says "I stand by the deputies." The committee recommended selling the county's helicopter and eliminating 29 deputies from the patrol division.

      County Legislature Chairman James Rhinehart defended the Ways and Means report. He said the changes are "all about the taxpayers" during these hard economic times. Rhinehart said he would not respond to Mahoney's characterization of the committee report as being "irresponsible."

      The Onondaga County Sheriff's Police Association issued a statement late Friday afternoon reacting to the proposed cuts. Here is the text of that statement:

      "In reviewing the budget proposed by the Legislature TMs Ways and Means Committee we are amazed at their blatant disregard for public safety in this Community. Their budget proposal calls for the elimination of 29 Police Officer positions which would include laying off 14 deputies; it calls for the elimination of the life saving aviation program and the sale of AIR-1; it denies the purchase of police cars, bullet proof vests and ammunition all necessary to perform the most basic of police functions. This budget will dramatically increase response times to emergencies and limit the resources available to handle such emergencies.

      The men and women of the Sheriff TMs Police Department proudly serve the residents of Onondaga County and we will continue to do so despite the actions of the Legislature. We are shocked by the irresponsible actions of the Legislature which compromise the safety and security we enjoy and we will continue to work diligently with Sheriff Walsh and the County Executive TMs Office to restore the cuts to our budget in an effort to maintain the level of service that our community deserves."

      When asked about the proposal to sell the County Sheriff Department's helicopter, Rhinehart pointed out there are several other police helicopters operating in Central New York, that could be called into service in Onondaga County when necessary.

      Statement from Brian Crowley, President, Onondaga County Deputy Sheriff TMs Police Association:

      "The Onondaga County Deputy Sheriff TMs Police Association (OCSPA), a union representing the 228 men and women of the Onondaga County Sheriff TMs Police Department, issues the following statement for immediate release:

      In reviewing the budget proposed by the Legislature TMs Ways and Means Committee we are amazed at their blatant disregard for public safety in this Community. Their budget proposal calls for the elimination of 29 Police Officer positions which would include laying off 14 deputies; it calls for the elimination of the life saving aviation program and the sale of AIR-1; it denies the purchase of police cars, bullet proof vests and ammunition all necessary to perform the most basic of police functions. This budget will dramatically increase response times to emergencies and limit the resources available to handle such emergencies.

      The men and women of the Sheriff TMs Police Department proudly serve the residents of Onondaga County and we will continue to do so despite the actions of the Legislature. We are shocked by the irresponsible actions of the Legislature which compromise the safety and security we enjoy and we will continue to work diligently with Sheriff Walsh and the County Executive TMs Office to restore the cuts to our budget in an effort to maintain the level of service that our community deserves."

      component-story-more_media_horiz-v1-01
      FOLLOW US ON TWITTER