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Saratoga leaders hope the worst is over

2011 sees county spending down savings, nursing home at forefront

Saratoga County Board of Supervisors chairman Thomas N. Wood, III addresses a meeting of the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce.

Saratoga County Board of Supervisors chairman Thomas N. Wood, III addresses a meeting of the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce. Photo by Julie Cushine-Rigg.

— Infrastructure and road maintenance were among other programs cut by $3 million. Still, the county is operating at a less than desired fund balance of around $8 million. This could cause problems with cash flow and potentially harm the county’s high bond rating, according to Hellwig.

“As we go forward this year we’re doing so with our eyes wide open to the challenges we face. … But make no mistake about it, we are in for another difficult budget cycle this year and it will take a number of years and a number of painful decisions before we’re out of the woods,” he said.

Nursing home likely issue going forward

Wood, supervisor of the Town of Saratoga, then took to the podium and spoke of changes and modifications the county has made. He also talked about a trip by county officials to Albany to meet with legislators, where they were told that there is “not a lot of sympathy for Saratoga County.”

“Saratoga County is looked at as being a little better off than most of the other counties in the state and there’s probably some truth to that statement…we’re in a tough budget year and the prospects for next year are for more difficult times,” he said.

The county has begun holding community forums to serve as platforms for residents to voice their concerns and issues. In this effort, Wood himself as also set up a webpage at www.communicatingwiththechairman.com.

A new budget committee has been formed as well and is chaired by Law and Finance Committee Chairman and Town of Charlton Supervisor Alan Grattidge.

“As part of our ongoing efforts to analyze the cost drivers in our budget, the county has contracted with the firm of Harris Beech to do an in-depth study and investigation of all aspects of the operation of Maplewood Manor,” said Wood.

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