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Legislators Approve RCC's Budget

Plus other items from Tuesday's meeting

 

The Rockland County Legislature approved the at Tuesday night’s meeting.

A public hearing was scheduled for Tuesday’s meeting on the proposed budget, but no-one in the crowd spoke during the hearing on the budget.

The college’s expenses are projected to jump $1,777,166 from $65,158,660 to $66,935,826 for September 1, 2012 through August 31, 2013.  RCC’s budget includes funds for the Retired Senior Volunteer Program.

The budget increases the county’s share by 1.87 percent or $300,000, bringing its portion from $16,075,567 to $16,375,567.

The budget vote passed by a vote of 15-1, with one legislator absent from the meeting. The only “no” vote came from Legislator Joseph Meyers, who wondered why the county’s share was raising $300,000 given the financial state of the county. He said he knows the share can’t go down, but wasn’t sure why it was going up.

At Tuesday’s meeting, the legislature also extended bus contracts for three months while it’s still in the process of sorting through bids to find a company to run its bus services.

The legislature extended its contract with Transport of Rockland from July 1 through September 31 for Routes 59, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 97, Loop 1, Loop 2 and Loop 3 for a total contract amount not to exceed $2,804,286.75, no county tax dollars. The legislature also unanimously passed a resolution to extend the contract for Hudson Transit Corp. to continue operating the Tappan ZEExpress for the same period for a total contract amount to not exceed $842,904.84, no county tax dollars. Transport of Rockland’s Route 93 partial bus service contract was also extended for that same time period for a total contract amount not to exceed $74,021.73, no county tax dollars.

Attending was Richard Brega Jr., who owns Brega Transport Corp. in Valley Cottage. He has shown up at various legislature meetings in recent months because he says he was told his company put in the lowest bid of any company, yet they have not been given the contract nor told why the process is taking so long.

The legislators also unanimously passed a number of bond resolutions. The resolutions authorized the financing of:

  • improvements to the Demarest Kill County Park dam, stating the current estimated maximum cost thereof is $1,000,000, appropriating $1,000,000 for such purpose and authorizing the issuance of $1,000,000 bonds.
  • upgrades for the courthouse security systems, stating the current estimated maximum cost thereof is $600,000, appropriating $600,000 for such purpose and authorizing the issuance of $600,000 bonds.
  • automotive garage improvements, stating the current estimated maximum cost thereof is $500,000, appropriating $500,000 for such purpose and authorizing the issuance of $500,000 bonds.
  • countywide HVAC improvements, stating the current estimated maximum cost thereof is $500,000, appropriating $500,000 for such purpose and authorizing the issuance of $500,000 bonds.
  • construction of an addition and improvements to the Fire Training Center County Communications Radio Room and acquisition of fire alarm communications equipment, including preliminary costs and expenses, stating the current estimated maximum cost thereof is $8,650,000, appropriating $650,000 in addition to the $8,000,000 heretofore appropriated for such purpose in an earlier resolution and authorizing the issuance of $650,000 bonds.
JLeo July 12, 2012 at 07:39 AM
Richard Brega says he does not no why its taking so long, maybe he shold ask himself. He is the one that is holding up the process. The contract was almost done, but since he did not get it he started a lawsuit and another and another....
Watchdog July 12, 2012 at 01:01 PM
He also put in the lowest bid so how come he was not awarded the contract..Explanation need in ENGLISH please. I understand his contract is lower by $7 million do why wasn't it awarded? His family has operated bus companies for generations. This non awarding of this contract smells pretty bad and the AG should be involved to see why the bid was not accepted and awarded.
JLeo July 12, 2012 at 01:20 PM
Ok in plain english Brega is player, he won a bid in 2007 and was not the lowest bidder he was the lowest responsible bidder, meaning he had better qualifications than the lowest bidder. He is not qualified to win this contract and should not be awarded this contract. That contract was for $1,250,000, guess what it ended up being $1,950,000. Richard Brega knows how to play the game and if you really think he will be the lowest bidder after the first year of operations I have the TZ Bridge to sell you. All this information is on the county website, check it out, makes for interesting reading, you can't make this stuff up.
JLeo July 12, 2012 at 01:31 PM
Also his family does run a top notch school bus company without a doubt. Richard Brega has a small transportation company that transports maybe 200 people a day, one run in the morning, one run in the afternoon. Tor and TZ Xpress have to transport 3.5 million riders a year. School bus transportation and mass transit are totally different. The only thing he has is a big fancy building, and that becomes a non-issue because operations will move to the counties transportation center.
Watchdog July 12, 2012 at 01:59 PM
You lose me when you attack him for having a "big fancy" building for which he undoubtedly pays "big fancy" taxes. Smacks of getting personal instead of being objective. I do not know Mr. BREGA but I am aware that his family has been successful in the bus business and He appears to be a man of some intelligence able to manage a larger operation such as TOR and TZ Express. I assume If he takes over that he will keep many of the same employees and he appears to have the qualifications of a good manager. This all smacks of the same kind of shameful politics that got us deeply in debt with or of the lowest County bond ratings in the State.
JLeo July 12, 2012 at 03:48 PM
I am not attacking him, just stating facts, that you are not listening to. The building was built in an empire zone, so there goes the taxes, I believe he gets tax relief for 10 years. either of the two companies would rehire all the employees presently with Coach USA, its to their benifit. Has nothing to do with good management, has to do with having experience running a large mass transit operation. The other two companies that bid have hundreds of employees throughout their corporations that can come to Rockland to solve many of the problems that crop up daily. Brega has only himself, his brother and 2 retired transit managers. You are just looking at the bid number he put out, its not reality, the company that presently runs it knows how much it costs to run, why would they purposely bid so high as to loose the contract, makes no sense, mark my words, if Brega by some chance wins it, watch the legislature vote before the end of the first year of the contract to increase the dollar amount by hundreds if not millions of dollars.

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