Skip to main content

Molinaro Hosts Budget Town Hall Forum
Virtual conversation discusses 2021 Executive Budget, COVID-19 and more

Published: 11/10/2020

For More Information Contact:

Colleen Pillus, Communications Director


Poughkeepsie, NY… Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro today hosted the second of three online Town Hall Forums specifically regarding his 2021 Executive Budget, which was released on Oct. 28th, providing hundreds of residents the opportunity to learn more about his budget proposal.

During the conversation, County Executive Molinaro answered residents’ questions about the Executive Budget, as well as their inquiries about COVID-19 and other topics of interest to them. An archive of the County Executive’s 44 online conversations, including today’s, is available on the Dutchess County Government YouTube page.

Released on Oct. 28th ahead of the mandated Nov. 1st deadline in the County’s Administrative Code, and presented virtually to adhere to proper social-distancing guidelines and a prohibition on large gatherings resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the County Executive’s $502 million budget proposal reduces county spending by more than $18 million or 3.6 percent, with no layoffs and no increase to property taxes. The proposed budget plan reduces the county property tax levy for the seventh consecutive year and cuts the property tax rate for homeowners and businesses for the sixth straight year.

The 2021 Executive Budget also maintains County services and programs, with new initiatives addressing homelessness and housing, youth services and police reform, as well as continued funding for senior services, mental health, infrastructure improvements, County parks and other critical services. The County’s 2021 Executive Budget webpage contains full budget documents, video messages about specific topic areas and an interactive “Budget in Brief” webpage.

Among the other highlights of today’s discussion:

  • County Executive Molinaro updated residents on the most current data posted on the Dutchess County COVID-19 Community Impact Dashboard:
    • 5,839 confirmed cases
    • 317 active cases
    • 12 hospitalizations
    • 168 deaths
    • 5,354 recovered
    • 239,103 tests completed
    • 2.7% regional positivity rate
      • Dutchess County’s 7-day positivity rate was 1.9% on Monday, Nov. 9th
  • The Dutchess County Department of Behavioral and Community Health (DBCH) continues to work with Marist College leadership to identify contacts and perform contact tracing of individuals who may have been exposed to COVID-19. There are currently 80 confirmed cases. The Town of Poughkeepsie school remains on “pause” until at least Wednesday, Nov. 11th.
  • DBCH staff is working closely with the New York State Department of Health and Fishkill Rehabilitation, where 30 confirmed COVID-19 resident and staff cases have been confirmed. There have sadly been two resident fatalities.
  • On Thursday, Nov. 5th, DBCH issued a public health alert, encouraging voters who cast ballots at the East Fishkill Community Center on Nov. 3rd to get tested for COVID-19, following a poll work at the center testing positive. There is a minimal risk to the community, As proper safety precautions and protocols were adhered to at the polling site, there is minimal risk to the community but residents who voted there are advised to monitor for symptoms and encouraged to  seek testing.   To date, there are currently no cases of COVID-19 connected to the poll worker.

County Executive Molinaro will again discuss the 2021 County Budget and answer questions on Thursday, November 12th when the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce hosts the County Executive Molinaro  beginning at 8 a.m. for a 90-minute virtual presentation. Residents can register online to take part in the Chamber’s Zoom event online.

Next week, the County Executive will host his next COVID-19 Facebook Live Town Hall on Wednesday, November 18th at 3pm. He will also also host his final virtual 2021 Executive Budget Town Hall Forum on Thursday, Nov. 19th at 6 p.m. That online event will also be available to view live on the County’s Facebook page, and as with previous virtual forums, American Sign Language interpreters will translate the live discussion.