Tentative budget will be reviewed by the legislature

— On Friday, Sept. 14, the county executive presented the tentative 2013 budget for Onondaga County. Over the past year, Onondaga County has accomplished much. We have weathered the fiscal crisis that began four years ago very well; we made sustainable, structural cuts in spending, we managed our savings and maintained AAA bond ratings amongst the top agencies. As the legislature begins its review of the 2013 budget, we will look to continue to make government leaner, and make smart decisions with regard to the use of revenues.

Several large departments that directly affect the local tax dollars report to the County Facilities committee, of which I am chair. A few examples of these departments are Facilities Management, Parks and Recreation, Department of Transportation and the Onondaga County Public Libraries.

The mission of Facilities Management is to provide maintenance, capital project development and operations services for all of the county-owned facilities. The county owns and operates several facilities, including Jamesville Correctional Facility, the Civic Center, the OnCenter/War Memorial complex, the Court House, as well as the various parks facilities all over the county.

Parks and Recreation is one of the most visible departments in the county. Many people have visited at least one of the numerous parks we have to offer. Beaver Lake Nature Center, Onondaga Lake Park, Oneida Shores, Rosamond Gifford Zoo, Jamesville Beach and Alliance Bank Stadium are some of the most notable parks in Onondaga County. They offer a wide variety of recreation programming and educational opportunities.

The Department of Transportation (DOT) provides an immeasurable service to Onondaga County. DOT is responsible for the maintenance of more than 700 miles of highways and bridges. Snow removal in the winter months, and paving, striping, and bridge repair in the summer months is imperative to the safety of our residents.

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