So should the county leverage this unused asset to its advantage? The answer is an obvious, unequivocal yes.
We would caution the county’s leaders against balancing next year’s budget, or the 2014 budget, more likely, on the back of a landﬁll deal. The inefﬁciencies in county government, the eight-digit annual deﬁcit at the nursing home and a stunted economy will not be going away even if Northumberland is ﬁnally being ﬁlled with trash. We have seen time and time again municipal governments settling into a new normal when these long-term agreements are signed, only to face a day of reckoning once they expire.
Instead, supervisors in Saratoga County should use this opportunity at salvation to get the county’s ﬁscal house in order and plan for the next economic downturn. After all, we’ll eventually run out of places to put trash.