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September 25, 2018

Realism in Oswego County!


To The Editor:

Treasurer Gardner says that “County finances are ‘stable.’

Chairman of County Legislature Broadwell speaks of “collaboration, bipartisanship, mandated vs non-mandated costs, $713 in taxes”

Head of the IDA and OOC speaks of PILOT agreements, jobs, jobs.

Now take a realistic look at the county without rose (Republican) colored glasses on.

“County Finances ‘Stable'”

2010 – Fund Balance $42 million
2014 – Fund Balance $30 million – $2.92 million taken out to balance the budget
2015 – Fund Balance $27 million – $1 million taken out to balance the budget
2016 – Fund Balance $20 million – $1.75 million taken out to balance the budget
2017 – Fund Balance $? – $2.6 million taken out to balance the budget
2018 – Fund Balance – $26 million – $1.9 million taken out to balance the budget

A grand total of $10.17 million in 5 years has been taken out of the fund balance to balance the budget and they want to keep doing more of the same.

Real Stable – The fund balance has been reduced from $42 million less than 10 years ago to $26 million now!

Don’t forget the Reserve funds have yet to be replenished.

Collaboration, Mandated vs Non-Mandated Costs:

Non-Mandated costs and Taxes

A word has to be mentioned regarding the (average) $713 tax bill our citizens receive from Oswego County.

Our median income is less than that of the United States and New York State.

To state the obvious, we have issues.

It is imperative that the Legislature spend wisely.

To continue to use mandated costs as an excuse for high taxes is a deceptive practice aimed at blaming someone else.

There are far too many PILOTs in this county — tax breaks for business that you and I pay for.

Interested taxpayers need only look a little deeper to understand that New York State mandates are only a part of the problem.

As Chairman Broadwell speaks about revenue, keep in mind that when your elected official talks about revenue from any county department, that money is coming from you — the taxpayer.

County Clerk’s Office including the DMV?

You pay for that.

With every mortgage filed, every deed, every registration and renewed license you pay!

nd while the Chairman is correct in praising the efforts of county departments and employees, let’s look at some more facts about Oswego County and what you are getting for your money.

Aren’t you all so happy now?

Jobs, Jobs, PILOT Agreements

Ranked 59th out of 62 counties in Social/Economic standings.

Four years ago we were ranked 54th.

Oswego County ranks last in health outcomes in New York State. 25% of the children in this county live in poverty which is higher than the state average.

Oswego County’s unemployment rate is 7.2% — much higher than the state average of 5.3%. Ranked in the top 5 for highest unemployment in the state.

Aren’t we so glad we have so many PILOT agreements that are costing us millions of lost tax dollars?
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Oswego County has a long way to go.

Now you have a realistic view of your county without rose (Republican) colored glasses.

Frank Castiglia Jr. – D-25th District – Minority Leader

4 Responses “Realism in Oswego County!”

  1. Joe
    June 14, 2018 at 8:23 am

    Isn’t Mr. Broadwell’s family a recipient of PILOT money? If so isn’t there a conflict if he votes on the budget that includes money for PILOT???

  2. Class of '77
    June 14, 2018 at 8:41 am

    The County GETS money from a P.I.L.O.T.

  3. Frank Castiglia
    June 15, 2018 at 6:15 am

    Joe & Class of ’77, Both are right. Mr. Broadwell has a big conflict of interest, and yes the county does get a fraction of what it would get without the PILOT agreement. PILOTs are needed it’s true but not for the length of time being handed out. If a business isn’t going to make it in 5yrs they are going to leave. They should be renegotiated every 5 yrs. depending on the size and number of new employees and if it is an established business or new. The tax payers don’t mind PILOTs if they are getting good high paying jobs, but minimum wage jobs just don’t warrant a long and big PILOT agreement.

  4. Joe
    June 15, 2018 at 8:47 am

    Class of 77, if your not paying your full accessed value for your property then you are receiving money from the county in the form of a TAX BREAK. If you’re voting on the budget that contains these tax breaks and you are benefiting from such, then you are in conflict. I do believe Mr. Broadwell is benifiting from these tax breaks…. I agree with you Mr. Castiglia that they should be reviewed every 5 years. You could start with Century 21 in Oswego. I do believe they got a PILOT for a restaurant that hasn’t been there for years but still receives the benefit?????

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