Mineola, NY– Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos released his review of the County’s 2016 proposed budget and projects a deficit risk of $49.1 million. The County financial fundamentals will remain weak with a wide Structural Gap projected at negative $141 million and a Nassau Interim Finance Authority (NIFA) presentation deficit expected to end 2016 at negative $201 million. The Long Term Debt will continue to edge higher approaching $3.9 billion while the deferred pension liability is projected to grow to $240 million and the property tax liability is estimated to increase to $305 million.
“The 2016 budget will require additional initiatives to end in balance,” Comptroller Maragos said. “The weakening County financials and the growing debt can no longer be ignored. A credible multi-year plan is now essential to avoid more painful consequences later.”
The County’s 2016 Proposed Budget attempts to achieve balance using a combination of revenue increases and expense savings in response to anticipated lower sales tax revenues and structural cost increases. Spending is reduced by $30.7 million compared to the 2015 adopted budget while new revenue initiatives are expected to generate $84.3 million in new revenues from a property tax increase, fee increases and Video Lottery Terminals. These initiatives and other non-budgetary opportunities proposed by the Administration, however, may not be sufficient to fully overcome a projected budgetary deficit risk of $49.1 million (See Exhibit 1). Additional cost saving or revenue opportunities will be required to end 2016 in budgetary balance.
“The 2016 proposed budget has little flexibility and leaves no room for error,” Comptroller Maragos added. “A possible 2016 year-ending deficit may deplete the County fund balance.”Connect with Nassau County Comptroller Maragos Online:http://www.nassaucountyny.gov/agencies/Comptroller/index.html