Latimer’s proposed 2021 Westchester budget reduces tax levy by $1 million

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WHITE PLAINS – Westchester County Executive George Latimer’s proposed county budget for 2021 comes in at $2.091 billion, $15.7 million less than the 2020 spending plan.

“This year has been extraordinarily challenging.  Despite these challenges, we as a county have remained resilient and I have no doubt that working together we will emerge from this crisis stronger than before,” he said.

The 2021 budget includes an additional $5 million for economic development programs, $5 million for housing assistance programs and $2 million for food insecurity.

Feeding Westchester President and CEO Karen Erren was glad that the county executive continued “to recognize the need to lift our neighbors up during these challenging times. More than 300,000 county residents are currently relying on us each month, including many individuals who are facing food insecurity for the first time. Allocating $2 million to address food insecurity in Westchester is a critical investment and one that will both nourish and strengthen our communities.”

The Business Council of Westchester Executive Vice President/COO John Ravitz said the county is “facing the most serious fiscal challenge since World War II, but [the council] is confident that the county executive and his team will be adopting a budget that to the degree possible maintains essential services, while at the same time protects the County’s bond rating.”

Ravitz there remain many unknowns including the state’s serious budget woes, which will impact the county budget.”

County Economic Development Director Bridget Gibbons said her office will assist businesses Westchester businesses that have faced “a deleterious impact from the Covid-19 pandemic. This budget, with its $5million for expanded economic development programs, gives us the tools to tackle this immense challenge.”