Posted in the Little Falls Forum
#1 Aug 11, 2013
No local governments have yet made it onto the New York State Comptroller’s Office list of fiscally stressed municipalities.
But that doesn’t mean they aren’t facing troubles.
Three governments in Oneida and Herkimer Counties are within jumping distance of the designation “Susceptible to Fiscal Stress,” according to data on the Comptroller’s Office website.
* The town Trenton
* Oneida County
* The city of Little Falls
The complex scoring system the state used to determine stress levels looked at the amount in the municipality’s savings account, whether the government was running deficit budgets and monthly expenditures compared to cash on hand.
Trenton ranked highest of the local municipalities, with a total score of 41.3 percent. A score of 45-percent rates a Susceptible to Stress designation. Villages had not yet been analyzed, because many of them have fiscal years that end later than the other governments’.
Oneida County’s score was 38.8 percent, and Little Falls’ 37.9 percent.
By comparison, Monroe County got an 82.1 percent score, the highest in the state. Broome County, which is similar to Oneida County in size, scored a 54.6 percent.
One change of fortune
Oneida County’s staff pinpointed low reserves and the fact that the county’s cash on hand was less than half its average monthly costs in 2012.
County Executive Anthony Picente said he has been working since taking office in 2007 to reduce costs and build county reserves.
But, like county executives across the state, he has battled rising costs for pensions, employee healthcare and Medicaid and drops in state and federal funding.
Roads and bridges aren’t repaired as frequently, there are longer waiting lists for meals provided to the homebound elderly and daycare funds for low-income mothers have been in jeopardy.
And in its 2011 budget, the county eliminated 140 positions, including 69 layoffs.
“Two years ago, we had to dip in and cut positions and reduce spending,” Picente said of 2011.“You are always one economic turn or change of fortune away from that.”
Down but not out
Trenton Supervisor Joseph Smith said he could not argue with the Comptroller’s Office figures, but he believes his town is fiscally sound.
“I don’t think we are much different than anyone else,” he said.
The town is seeing increasing costs, from wages to health benefits. Also, he said, half his town budget goes to the Highway Department.
“You look at a bad winter and that’s what sends you over the top,” he said.
Still, according to the Comptroller’s Office figures, Trenton has dipped into its savings to balance its budget in each of the past three years.
Read more: http://www.uticaod.com/news/x1383330830/Some-...
#2 Aug 12, 2013
I can't believe people are not outraged by this. This council has turned a blind eye to the treasurers office while conducting more important business. This year they spent little time and effort on the budget and just rubber stamped whatever Dave put out there. Did it not shed light on the city's financials when the state moved in for seven months to audit the book? I know, protecting the YMCA and its non-profits, going after Joy, illegal meetings, and dividing the city was more important then running the city. Even now, it is more important to talk about who is banging who, canal days, and Dave B's shirt selection. The city is a joke, and while it is easy to blame the Mayor, the council as a whole is the real disaster. A clueless bunch of morons. My god Gressler the savior doesn't even understand he can't go around his ward given cash to his constituents. Yes Jeff, that is one more thing you did that is illegal.
#3 Aug 12, 2013
I had heard rumors about Jeffs' "loans" around his ward. This one is tough to prove. But that behavior is consistent with most bleeding heart liberals. If Jeff did distribute money around his ward keep that in mind when this windbag runs for alderman again soon. keep in mind that many liberals live by a credo of "if I do it, even if it is possibly illegal, my "good" intentions make it ok."
#4 Aug 12, 2013
So, what do we do about it? Raise taxes chase out what ever tax base you have and end up like Detroit Or, dissolve the city into a village, wind down some services, lower taxes,cut regulations, allowing some fracking? Ohio is doing that and they are coming back.
#5 Aug 12, 2013
Little Falls, N.Y.—
The Little Falls Common Council will wait to decide whether or not to demolish a single-family home at 133 Church St.
The city received notice of a dangerous condition existing at the premises and is weighing if it should complete an emergency demolition of the home built in 1900.
Having received one proposal from a contractor to complete the work, the council will wait to receive estimates from two additional contractors before making a decision.
“There is serious concern about the property,” First Ward Alderman Jeffrey Gressler said during Tuesday evening’s meeting.“Apparently, the water was left on in the premises and there was a break, which allowed it to build up to where it blew out the foundation at the back of the home. The concern I have with waiting is that we may have to make a decision before the September meeting. As council members we have to commit ourselves to be flexible and available, because a special session may be needed before the September meeting to take action.”
First Ward Alderman Ronald Petrie said asbestos is another concern.“If the building is full of asbestos as we believe it is, the asbestos will be released if it collapses,” he said.
City Code Enforcement Officer Phil Green said the estimate the city received put the cost to demolish the building at $51,000.“If the building falls, it will cost a lot more than $51,000 to complete the demolition and remove the debris,” he said.
Green added the two contractors he is waiting to receive proposals from inspected the building. A fourth, he said, walked away from the project after seeing the home.
City Attorney Jennifer Chrisman said the property owner filed for bankruptcy and that she would have to notify the court before the city could demolish the building.
“Before that happens the city has to decide if this is an emergency and bypass the bid process or if it should go through the bid process and secure the required number of proposals. Either way, the city will have to contact the bankruptcy court before it can touch the building,” she said.“There is also the question of bonding.”
“The city does not have $51,000 in the budget right now, so if this is something the council wants done we will have to bond for it,” said city Treasurer David Petkovsek.
“I understand cost is a concern, but it sounds as though if the building goes down on its own there will be a bigger mess to contend with,” said Gressler.
Mayor Robert Peters questioned if the demolition will affect the neighboring homes.
“My concern is the two houses on either side of the building and if they will be able to be occupied if the building falls down or if the city takes it down,” he said.“I would hate to lose two more homes because of this action or inaction.”
As the Common Council waits to receive additional bids for the project Green said he would continue to monitor the home’s condition on a daily basis.
“If the condition of the home changes drastically I will notify the council,” he said.
Read more: http://www.littlefallstimes.com/news/x1383329...
#6 Aug 12, 2013
51k to demolish a single family home? Oh yeah, that's the government contract price. ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?
#7 Aug 12, 2013
"Demolition costs run about $11,000 for a single-family home."
#8 Aug 12, 2013
This would be illegal, expecially in an election year. Buying votes, what's next bussing voters to the polls?
#9 Aug 12, 2013
Yes agree illegal to bribe for votes!! What a dumbass and also very obvious how he is trying to shine in the paper and score some more brownie points with the people over church ! I know several people in his ward that is very disgusted with him lately
#10 Aug 12, 2013
But don't let that stop you from making the accusation!
#11 Aug 13, 2013
Or, we could do what Peters does every time Little Falls confronts a really hard problem: buy a new truck for DPW.
“Do SOMETHING !!!”
Since: Jan 08
#12 Aug 13, 2013
I think the news item... isn't !
The Comptroller applies some metrics and gives a score.
Those with HIGHER scores have more stress.
So you want a lower score...
Those with scores of 65% and higher SIGNIFICANT Stress
Those with scores 55-65% MODERATE Stress
Those with scores 45-65% SUSCEPTIBLE to Stress
Little Falls with a score of 38...
didn't even make the least stressed category.
Not a big deal!
Could LF do better... YES!
The City of Sherrill scored 3.3 !!!
Read the metrics they used:
Since: Feb 13
#13 Aug 13, 2013
Once again UTLT has cut through the b.s. and found specific info. Read it if you dare! Little Falls could do better and we definitely could do worse. I hope to keep things on the better side. Even by accident!
#14 Aug 13, 2013
I did not start this accusation. I did comment on the original poster. Hence the tough to prove comment. Commenting on the original posting on this subject is not an accusation. Please read it again. Or have someone read it to you.
“Do SOMETHING !!!”
Since: Jan 08
#15 Aug 13, 2013
The fact that the State tells you what they measure...
and how it is scored...
is quite transparent.
You can make decisions to improve your score!
I personally am more interested in the ENVIRONMENTAL Stress test.
On Page EIGHT of the following:
#16 Aug 15, 2013
SPEND SPEND SPEND New ambulance new vactor had to have them. Pay and benefits are to high for a city the size of Little Falls. Your tax base is not what it used to be.You have been put on notice things need to change.
#17 Aug 15, 2013
I call BS, you filthy liar. You are too stupid to govern! That article shows that Little Falls is one of the worst-managed municipalities in the State of New York. And YOU are part of the problem, Mr. "I'm Proud We Borrowed $300,000 to Buy an Unnecessary New Truck".
#18 Aug 15, 2013
Exactly so. This is like watching a train wreck in slow motion. The drunk engineer is taking another swig from the bottle, heedless of the sharp curve ahead, and the brakeman laughs and pats him on the back .... Peters buys new trucks and hires new employees, heedless of the demographic and benefits curve ahead, and Burletool laughs and pats him on the back.
Burletool needs to resign. We need legislators with a sense of responsibility in this fiscal crisis, not court jesters.
#19 Aug 15, 2013
We will see if the city leaders deal with this report. Time to deal with your city problems. SPENDING SPENDING SPENDING
#20 Aug 15, 2013
One of the aldermen, Burletool, is already on Topix trying to downplay the report. I expect those fools on the Common Council and the oaf-in-chief to play the part of ostriches, and stick their heads in the sand. "Let's all pretend that nothing is wrong."
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