Skip to main content

Dutchess County’s “Mayday for Mandate Relief” Calls for Action on Mandates

Published: 5/15/2012

For More Information Contact:

Colleen Pillus

Poughkeepsie… Dutchess County Executive Marcus J. Molinaro joined Dutchess County Legislature Chairman Robert Rolison as the Dutchess County Legislature last night issued a proclamation declaring May 15th Mayday for Mandate Relief.  Mayday is an international call for help, and Mayday for Mandate Relief calls on the State to provide much-needed help to counties through mandate relief measures.

Mayday for Mandate Relief puts the spotlight on the State mandated programs that continue to consume property tax dollars and curtail critical local services that contribute to New York State’s excellent quality of life.    In Dutchess County, over 77% of all net county costs go toward mandated program costs.

“The State’s lack of significant mandate relief has left few options for county governments.   In Dutchess County, mandates have led the County’s fund balance or “safety net” to be drained down in order to prevent the drastic reduction of key local services most important to residents such as road repairs, snow plowing, 911 dispatch, parks and sheriff patrols.   The rising costs of mandates, coupled with a stagnant economy, means we are now approaching the 2013 county budget with a $40 million budget gap, so the need for mandate relief has never been greater.   The time for action is now.”

The Governor’s Mandate Relief Council is charged with reviewing specific mandates identified by local governments, and advancing proposals to reduce the burden on counties, cities, and towns.    The New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC) has been active in its efforts to highlight the impact of state imposed mandates on county governments with its 9 for 90 campaign which highlights the 9 state mandates that consume 90 percent of the county property tax levy statewide.   Those nine mandates include:

  • Medicaid
  • Public Assistance/Safety Net
  • Child Welfare
  • Preschool Special Education
  • Early Intervention
  • Indigent Defense
  • Probation
  • Youth Detention
  • Pensions

Dutchess County government joins NYSAC and counties across New York State highlighting “Mayday for Mandate Relief” and calling on the Mandate Relief  Council to submit a package of relief proposals to the Governor and State Legislature for a vote this State Legislative Session.

“Dutchess County, along with other counties across New York, is participating in the nonpartisan, state wide initiative called Mayday for Mandate Relief to raise the public’s awareness through fact based presentations so that people can learn about mandates, see what the budget implications are and the services that are in jeopardy of being cut.  Thank you to the leaders of Dutchess County including Executive Marcus J. Molinaro and Dutchess County Legislature Chairman Robert Rolison for joining this important cause,” said Mark Westcott who is the Warren County Supervisor, who initiated Mayday for Mandate Relief campaign effort with NYSAC.

Dutchess County Legislature Chairman Robert Rolison said, “Without immediate mandate relief from Albany, the challenge of remaining under the property tax cap while continuing to maintain current levels of services becomes virtually impossible.   We need Albany to provide mandate relief for counties and local taxpayers this legislative season.”

Residents are urged to log onto the county’s website,  to help enact mandate relief now by completing a simple, 3 step form that allows them to voice their support for immediate mandate relief to their state representative.

“Residents need to make their voices heard with a loud “MAYDAY” to Albany in order to make immediate, significant mandate relief a reality,” concluded County Executive Molinaro.