Assemblymembers Kenneth Zebrowski and Ellen Jaffee along with State Senator David Carlucci have introduced a bill that will allow Rockland County to issue up to $80 million in bonds to pay off its deficit for the fiscal years 2010, 2011 and 2012. This bill entitled the Rockland County Deficit Financing Act will require strict oversight by the New York State Comptroller.
The state legislators co-authored the bill in response to the county's home rule request for authorization to finance its projected accumulated deficit. The bill authorizes the county to issue bonds on or before December 31, 2013 not to exceed $80 million in order to cover its projected deficit in the general fund.
The bill requires the county to submit the proposed budget, as well as quarterly revenue reports, to the state comptroller every year until the bonds are paid off, for a maximum period of 10 years. The state comptroller will examine each proposed county budget and then make recommendations to the county. Any recommendations by the comptroller shall be binding upon the County.
The bill requires a home rule request be passed by the county legislature at Tuesday's meeting in order to be taken up by the state legislature before its session ends. The legislature meets at 7 p.m.
County officials recently asked state officials for the abiliity to bond for up to $95 million. Zebrowski first proposed stringent state oversight of any county bonding in May.