A New York State fiscal monitoring board will consider for the first time in its 17-year history imposing spending cuts to Nassau County’s budget.
The Nassau Interim Finance Authority has a meeting scheduled for Dec. 7 to discuss forcing changes to the county’s budget because of concerns about revenue assumptions and other expenditure savings included in the spending proposal. The Republican-controlled Nassau County legislature sent a letter to NIFA on Monday proposing $31.5 million in cuts and revenue enhancements to help balance next year’s $2.99 billion budget.
“NIFA is currently reviewing the proposal from the legislature to determine which items are acceptable—or not,” the agency’s spokesman David Chauvin said in a statement. “The NIFA Board will then determine how the difference will be made up by additional cuts.”
NIFA previously voiced concerns last month about some of the amendments legislative Republicans proposed to strip out $60 million in fee hikes from County Executive Ed Mangano’s budget proposal. Mangano will be replaced on Jan. 1 by County Executive-elect Laura Curran, a current Democratic legislator.
“NIFA has disallowed over $60M in contingent revenue sources that we proposed and that municipalities around the state routinely use to balance their budgets, creating a budget crisis that does not exist in reality, but allows NIFA to unfairly continue its control of county finances,” Nassau County Legislative Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves, R-East Meadow, said in a statement.
Gonsalves didn't seek re-election and will end her tenure as a county lawmaker at the end of the year.
NIFA has rejected past initial budgets due to uncertain revenue assumptions before eventually approving them before the start of the new year. The state control board was created in 2000 and has controlled Nassau finances since 2010.
Nassau County is located on Long Island around 15 miles east of Manhattan and has a population of roughly 1.3 million. The large suburban county has bond ratings of A2 by Moody’s Investors Service and A-plus by S&P Global Ratings.