Curran’s first budget includes no tax hike, more police spending

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MINEOLA -

Laura Curran’s first budget proposal as Nassau County executive includes no tax hike and increases spending for police.

Curran has proposed a $3 billion budget that she says does not include higher taxes or new fees. She cites higher-than-expected sales tax revenues as the main reason.

“There is no property tax increase in this budget and we're adding two new classes of police recruits in the budget,” says Curran. “We're just being much more efficient. We're asking all of our department heads to do more with less.”

The budget also does not set aside money in case the county reaches a new agreement with its five major unions. Their old pact expired last year.

Curran says new sources of revenue could materialize next year to offset any potential loss in revenues in other areas. For example, if the state legalizes sports betting as New Jersey did, it would mean tax money to counties.

No matter how it's achieved, the biggest priority for homeowner Angela Crowder, of Roosevelt, is keeping property taxes where they are.

“We do need more money for police protection, but they need to do something to protect the homeowners also so that we can stay here,” says Crowder.

The budget also adds about 170 new county employees, most of them to backfill vacancies in the Department of Assessment. Curran says they are building that department from the ground up after it was “decimated.”

The proposed budget now goes to the county Legislature for its approval.

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