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County Executive Violates County Charter

Mark C. Poloncarz criticized previous administration for doing the same thing he is doing now

(Buffalo) – The Office of Erie County Comptroller received an incomplete 2014 Budget Revenue and Expense Projections report from Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz, a direct violation of the Erie County Charter. 

The administration is mandated by the Erie County Charter to include 2014 Real Property Tax Revenue estimates in the report, but the Poloncarz administration violated the Erie County Charter and refused to provide the information. 

This information is critically important to Legislators who will soon deliberate over the proposed 2014 budget.  Not only is the Erie County Executive in violation of the Erie County Charter, but he is withholding what is the second largest revenue source for all of Erie County: Real Property Tax Revenue.

While previously serving as Comptroller, Mark C. Poloncarz took issue with Real Property Tax Revenue projections being withheld from the Charter Mandated October 1st deadline:

“Poloncarz insisted that the county executive hand over his numbers. The county executive refused. So Poloncarz was not able to review the budget until the complete document was released, at the late last minute, on October 15.”

Source: Artvoice, “The Transparent Mr. Collins,” Geoff Kelly, 10/31/08 

An analysis of the budget is difficult to complete without that (Real Property Tax Revenue projection) hefty slice of the pie chart.

Source: Artvoice, “Running Government Like a Business,” Geoff Kelly, 11/05/08

“Mark Poloncarz should hold himself to the high standard he held the previous County Executive to.  The current County Executive criticized his predecessor for doing the same exact thing he’s doing now.  This political hypocrisy hurts taxpayers and leaves legislators in the dark.  Government is most responsive to taxpayers when business is conducted in an open, honest, and transparent manner, not in secret.”

“If Mark Poloncarz insisted the former County Executive ‘hand over his numbers,’ then we do the same.  Now the ‘shoe is on the other foot’ and he is being held accountable.  Mark Poloncarz should live up to the same standard he previously professed to believe in, and disclose property tax projections.  An accurate analysis of the budget cannot be completed without the information Mr. Poloncarz is keeping secret.  He knows that.  I call on the County Executive to stop playing political games and hand over the information,” said Erie County Comptroller Stefan I. Mychajliw.

Click here to view the letter to the County Executive