Dutchess legislature’s budget committee okays proposed 2020 budget


POUGHKEEPSIE – The 2020 Dutchess County budget as proposed by County Executive Marcus Molinaro has been approved by the county legislature’s Budget, Finance and Personnel Committee.

Several amendments were made delivering continued tax relief and further enhancing the services our community needs and expects.

Legislator Will Truitt offered an amendment to provide $50,000 to an existing fund to provide homeless veterans with wrap-around emergency assistance. “Veterans have put their lives on the line to protect our nation and everything that can be done, should be done to combat this dire situation,” he said. Truitt also amended the budget adding an additional $20,000 for opioid outreach, education, and training as follows:

  • Harm reduction and Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) education for community service providers;
  • Outreach to EMS workers related to the opioid epidemic; and
  • Training for the DBCH Opioid Educator to work with and train pharmacists to better address the needs of opioid-related individuals.

Legislature Chairman Gregg Pulver amended the budget increasing the Competitive Grant Program to benefit the Workforce Development Dutchess Reads Program and the Shared Services Program to help communities with small infrastructure projects. “High-speed internet access, or broadband, is critical to economic opportunity, job creation, education, and civic engagement I offer this amendment to help bridge the digital divide,” he said, noting “investing in infrastructure is too important to ignore when creating or improving a successful community.”

Pulver also added an $25,000 for a 4-H Program through Cooperative Extension for children with special needs.  Legislator Houston stated, “she fully supported this amendment and is pleased with the additional funding.  As a Legislative Liaison to Dutchess County Cornell Cooperative Extension she sees first-hand how hard the board works for funding and the positive effect it will have on 4-H programs and the youth of Dutchess County.”

The full legislature will hold a public hearing on the 2020 spending plan as amended by the Budget, Finance, & Personnel Committee on Monday, December 2 at 7 p.m. in the Legislative Chambers of the County Office Building in Poughkeepsie.

It will then be considered by the full legislature for final adoption on Thursday, December 5 at 7 p.m. in the Legislative Chambers.