WOODBURY - Nassau County's fiscal watchdog agency has given County Executive Ed Mangano 60 days to submit a plan to pay for employee raises that were approved this weekend.
In the early hours of Saturday morning, the Nassau Interim Finance Agency voted 6-1 to lift the wage freeze that had been imposed on the county's unionized workers for the past three years. The vote came with a stipulation that the county executive devise a plan to pay for workers' raises.
If the county fails to do so, NIFA says it will take matters into its own hands and impose cuts to the county budget to cover the costs.
A former longtime NIFA board member is also criticizing NIFA Chairman Jon Kaiman for his role in the end of the wage freeze. In March, Kaiman played an integral role in negotiating new agreements between the county and the employee unions. But former NIFA Director Geoge Marlin says Kaiman should not have been involved in the negotiations, because it's the board's role to judge such proceedings. Marlin says it's a conflict.
Marlin adds that NIFA's decision to lift the wage freeze could mean more fiscal trouble for the county. "Here's what you can expect," he said. "You can expect a cash crisis in the county: you can expect the rating agencies to drop the credit ratings, and you can expect boomers and young people to continue to move away from this county, and over time, Nassau County will be a municipal desert."
News 12 reached out to Mangano and Kaiman for input, but has not yet heard back.