by Louella LeClair, County Legislator
Last week, Legislator Doug Malone wrote a letter to the editor and I feel it is my duty to respond to his accusations.
One statement was very true: Oswego County is going to have to make many adjustments this year to keep the budget within the state tax cap and also to realize some savings to keep taxes from rising.
Last year, the Republican caucus decided to look at each and every department and make more cuts than were offered by department heads. To the credit of each department head and all outside agencies, they came back with more cuts.
We do not want to cut people or services. We worked very hard to make sure this did not happen. Through attrition and retirements, it was determined not to hire more people to fill the vacancies. Some departments are very small so it could not operate properly if several people retired.
I have questioned the department head on each and every hire for the past three months. If the position requested was to fill a vacancy and it was in the budget for the year, and if it would hamper services, then I supported the hire.
Every department is well aware of the policy. Mr. Malone, of course, failed to give this information in his letter. He prefers politics and innuendo to make false statements.
Bashing Republicans and fellow legislators when he knows full well, or should know full well, that his statements are not true is just plane bloviating, something he prides himself on.
The people of Oswego County should be very proud of the county legislators…we look at every dime that is spent. We look at the money as if it we coming out of our pockets because we are concerned about the budget.
More than 68 percent of the monies collected is mandated by the state and we cannot cut any of it…we have to pay.
There is very little wiggle room in many departments to keep services flowing. Our department heads are very dedicated and they deserve our respect and allegiance not Legislator Malone’s rhetoric.