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2020 Dutchess County Budget Adopted with Bipartisan Support

Published: 12/5/2019

For More Information Contact:

Colleen Pillus, Communications Director

(845) 486-2000

Poughkeepsie, NY… The 2020 Dutchess County Budget was adopted in a 22-2 bipartisan vote by the Dutchess County Legislature Thursday evening. The budget was adopted with several amendments to Dutchess County Executive Marcus J. Molinaro’s Proposed County Budget in one of the most efficient budget meetings in memory. The budget reduces the county property tax levy for the sixth consecutive year, making the largest such reduction in 20 years, and it lowers the property tax rate for a fifth year, from $3.45 to $3.27 per $1,000 of true value assessments. The budget maintains the County’s fiscal stability and essential programs, including services for seniors, veterans, youth and those with disabilities, and strengthening proven economic engines, such as tourism and the arts.

County Executive Molinaro said, “The 2020 Budget provides historic tax cuts, while maintaining essential services and programs that ensure a high quality of life for all residents. I am grateful to the Dutchess County Legislature for its diligent deliberation of the 2020 budget, which provides the largest tax levy decrease in 20 years; lowers the tax rate for a fifth year; expands services for families, seniors and veterans; continues to combat the opioid epidemic; bolsters the arts; and improves youth programming, all while investing in our infrastructure and supporting our growing economy.”

Dutchess County Legislature Chairman Gregg Pulver said, “The 2020 budget strikes a balance between programs and services that support a thriving community, while controlling spending and yet again providing tax relief to residents and businesses. I’m proud of the additional investments the Legislature added to the budget to expand community services, including additional funding in the Agency Partnership Grant program for critical programs such as a new library component for ‘DutchessReads’ aimed at bridging the digital divide. Through a truly collaborative process between County Executive Molinaro, his administration and my fellow legislators, we have delivered a fiscally responsible budget that ensures the continued success of Dutchess County and its citizens.”

Legislative Amendments to the 2020 County Budget include:

  • $50,000 increase to Division of Veterans’ Services to serve homeless veterans;
  • $575,000 increase to the Department of Planning and Development for competitive grant programs
    • $375,00 increase to the Agency Partnership Grant Program (APG), including $75,000 for a library component of Dutchess Reads;
    • $200,000 increase to the Municipal Innovation Grant (MIG) Program;
  • $25,000 to Cornell Cooperative Extension for development of “ThinkDIFFERENTLY” 4-H
  • $20,000 increase to the Office for the Aging to fund senior home care; and
  • $20,000 increase to the Department of Behavioral and Community Health (DBCH) for additional opioid awareness, training and education.

Amendments were funded by increased sales tax revenue as a result of updated projections, additional appropriation from fund balance, and state and federal reimbursement.

Dutchess County Legislator John Metzger, Chairman of the Budget, Finance and Personnel Committee, said, “I thank my legislative colleagues for making this budget process swift and efficient. Thanks to their dedication and support, we have passed a budget that continues to control spending while maintaining and expanding essential services and programs to benefit all Dutchess County residents.”

County Executive Molinaro said, “By working together, we can continue to support those in need, attract visitors from around the globe, and strengthen our local economy as we move into the future. This 2020 budget provides for all residents, while remaining fiscally responsible and efficient as we work to overcome ongoing mandates, changing legislation, and rising costs. I am proud the County Legislature and I share a vision of a stronger, more connected Dutchess County community.”

The adoption of the 2020 Dutchess County Budget followed several public forums, including a countywide telephone town hall, where residents had the opportunity to speak with County Executive Molinaro to learn about the details of the budget, ask questions and share their feedback. 

The budget, with amendments, will now be forwarded to County Executive Molinaro for review and signature. The final step in the 2020 Dutchess County Budget process – override consideration of any amendment vetoes by the County Executive and the adoption of the tax levy – will be on Monday, December 16th at the Dutchess County Legislature’s Board meeting.

2020 Adopted Budget Key Facts:

  • Property Tax Levy Reduction for the sixth consecutive year, the largest such reduction in two decades
  • Property Tax Rate Reduced from $3.45 to $3.27 per $1,000 of true value assessments
  • Total 2020 appropriations of $514,147,285