Schenectady County budget cuts taxes

Farley said using Federal Stimulus money to pay off the Medicaid costs will only artificially lower taxes this year.

"What they've done here is they are paying for certain Medicaid expenditures, that ordinarily the county would have to pay for, with stimulus money, which is fine, but at the end of the day that's how they're getting to their tax cut," said Farley.

After discussing other cost mandates, Rooney moved onto cost-containing strategies the county has taken over the past six years to minimize the impact on taxpayers through cuts and creative strategies to control the costs that are within the county's control. These efforts have resulted in savings of approximately $20 million and include:

Instituting strict hiring and purchasing controls.

Reducing the county workforce by eliminating 200 positions.

Implementing groundbreaking employee health-care cost cutting initiatives, including Medicare Advantage Plans and a Canadian Drug Purchasing Program.

Implementing a child welfare management program that maintains the health and safety of children while realizing savings through cost effective programming and revenue maximization.

Reducing the county vehicle fleet by 13 percent.

Implementing intergovernmental cooperative efforts. ""

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