TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Troy politics sit in a legal conundrum while city officials are unclear of the next steps after council members voted down a tax cap override that now makes the proposed 2017 budget unbalanced.
Mayor Patrick Madden says he would begin looking into that, but according to Council President, layoffs won’t happen. Rather this vote was meant to end the era of tax and spend in Troy, but some homeowners are frustrated their elected officials haven’t learned to work together.
“Everybody is going to have to do some belt tightening,” said Troy resident Gary Bradley.
Bradley has lived in Troy his entire life. He spoke at Tuesday night’s budget meeting, urging council members and the mayor to work together, but that hasn’t happened.
“Seems to me from what I’ve heard in their conversations, they are having personal thoughts rather than thoughts of the citizens of Troy,” Bradley said.
Since the council did not adopt a budget, Mayor Patrick Madden’s proposal could go into effect next year, but without a tax cap override, $5.9 million needs to be carved out of his plan.
The mayor says that would result in serious cuts.
“We can come to a compromise, either lower taxes or cut services, but they need to be on par with each other,” Mayor Madden said.
Council President Carmella Mantello says that isn’t true, that the mayor needs council approval to lay off employees. Instead, Mantello says council members would cut added positions and raises that were included in the mayor’s proposed budget.
“We will work with the mayor to cut dramatically overtime, to look at the county for consolidation, to really begin to change the structure of city hall,” Mantello said.
The State Comptroller’s Office is reviewing the city’s situation, which remains fluid, but if city can’t balance their budget, it could potentially dig the city deeper into debt that has loomed over troy since the 1990s.
Bradley remembers when the state stepped in two decades ago. He doesn’t want to see that happen again.
“Then it’s up to the state to make decisions and that’s not a good thing,” Bradley said.
According to the State Comptroller’s Office, when a default budget exceeds the tax levy limit, the local government is recommended to adopt a deficit reduction plan.