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Budget passes, MCC bonding halted

Rochester, N.Y. - The Monroe County budget passed Tuesday night. The Democratic minority offered four amendments, two that would place restrictions on the Local Development Corporations, quasi-government companies which are under state and federal investigation.

Another amendment sought to restore $1.3 million in restoration of daycare subsidies, cut in the proposed budget. It failed.

The one point of agreement between Democratic and Republican lawmakers had to do with the salary of Sheriff Patrick OFlynn. He had been seeking to have his salary tied to that of the district attorney, or $174,000, but an amendment introduced by Republicans effectively froze his pay at $136,700.

Democrats threw a late wrinkle in the capital improvement project which was voted on after the budget. The minority voted against the final round of bonding for the new Monroe Community College Campus, some $40 million dollars, according to a democratic aide. The no vote was based on the democrats insistence that legislation be passed creating a bipartisan legislative committee to investigate the LDC matter.

For more than a decade, MCC has waited patiently for a new Downtown campus fitting of the College's world-class reputation, yet in one single night ten Legislators threatened to derail the project by placing partisanship before the people they serve, said Brooks. Our community now faces the very real possibility that the Downtown campus will be delayed, or worse, because these ten members have decided to hold MCC students, faculty, and staff hostage for their own political gain. Worse, hundreds of local jobs and millions of dollars in economic investment now hang in the balance.

Everyone has a line in the sand, Democratic Leader Carrie Andrews (D-Rochester) said. After years of being stifled and months of having our legitimate requests for information denied, we can no longer stand idly by while the County Executive investigates herself. As a caucus, we believe that while the criminal investigations are ongoing, the Legislature must take over the internal review. To allow otherwise would be to jeopardize the very foundation of our government and we will not let that happen.

The overall capital improvements amount to roughly $400 million in projects, according to a spokesman for Andrews.

 
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