Here’s a look at opinion content published today in The Journal News:
Rockland County budget: Editorial
We comment on the 2012 budget proposal advanced Tuesday by Rockland County Executive C. Scott Vanderhoef. The proposal would, among other things, defund the county’s nursing home and hospital complex, lay off as many as 800 county employees and ask homeowners for a one-time $160 surcharge. We write:
… Vanderhoef’s proposal makes the kind of hard choices that Rockland has somehow managed to duck — for years. Lawmakers now get their chance to vet the county executive’s proposal and to re-shape the budget plan; taxpayers get to weigh in as well. A final budget must be in place by Dec. 7.
It is not enough for either residents or legislators to point out — with some justification — that many of the budget-cutting decisions could have been made long ago, with less pain.
Lawmakers and other critics need to weigh in on what can be cut, and what’s important to preserve. For every restored position or saved program, though, a real funding source (or equivalent spending cut) must be found. In other words, the Legislature must not repeat the budget sins of the past. …
Rockland County budget: Baird
Bob Baird uses today’s column to comment on the county’s budget mess.
Tappan Zee Bridge: Reisman
Phil Reisman addresses a proposal from Greenburgh Supervisor Paul Feiner on the future of the Tappan Zee Bridge. Feiner has suggested that the aging span be converted into a park when its replacement is completed.