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Edward A. Rath III

Old Erie County Hall
92 Franklin Street, 4th Floor
Buffalo, N.Y. 14202

Phone: (716) 858-8676
Fax: (716) 858-8818

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February 2017 Column - Addressing high state taxes begins with unfunded mandates

New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo has a lot of big ideas. Some of these ideas would be incredible for our region, including the extension of light rail into Amherst. However, we first need to address how to pay for our current obligations before planning new investment ideas. Most importantly the state and its counties need to address how to pay for all the programs mandated by the state. These unfunded mandates from Albany decimate our budget and we have had to financially plan without any meaningful relief in years. Now the Governor’s recommends that counties consolidate services to cut these costs. Sorry but that’s a day late and a dollar short because it will not help this out of control problem.

Legislator Edward Rath reaction to Governor’s proposal for extension of light rail line to Amherst

“Today the Governor once again discussed the need for increased public transportation in our communities. I was very interested to again hear support for extension of the light rail line into the Town of Amherst. Clearly our public transportation lacks significantly and while this issue has been talked about often in the past, it hasn’t moved forward. I looked forward to hearing more details about the proposal and hope that we can enhance services for residents.” 

January 2017 Column - My Views on the 2017 Erie County Budget

Another year has passed and without much fanfare so did the 2017 Erie County Budget. In early December, the Legislature approved a $1.7 billion budget that for the third consecutive year reduced the county tax rate. This is an achievement to be proud of, but not one to linger on. The goal is always to try and return as much of your tax dollars to you as possible. Some years are easier than others. County employee costs continue to rise, our sales tax revenue continues to fall and the federal government and New York state refuses to remove costly mandates that make up over ninety-percent of our budget.

Legislator Rath announces investments into community groups for 2017

Erie County Legislator Edward A. Rath, III is pleased to announce that the Legislature has supported his requests for funding for several critical organizations in his district. The Legislature approved the funding at the Dec. 6, 2016 Budget Meeting to assist the organization in its efforts. 

December 2016 Column - Legislature invests in campaign to finally bring ridesharing to Buffalo

During the Thanksgiving holiday a reported 43,000 people tried to access Uber’s app across Upstate New York, not realizing that ridesharing was still illegal here. As a depended upon service across the world, it is surprising that much of NYS is without ridesharing. It is my hope that at the next session, the New York State Legislature finally acts on the bills needed to allow ridesharing. The governor is already on record in support of legalizing ridesharing but we have several hurdles to clear before it is allowed.