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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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Legislators approve resolution requesting meeting with ECFSA Board to review $100 million borrowing plan

Members of the Erie County Legislature have requested that the Erie County Fiscal Stability Authority (ECFSA) Board appear at the next Finance and Management Committee meeting to discuss the new plan that would allow the ECFSA to borrow on behalf of the Erie County Medical Center (ECMC) new emergency room. To account for the borrowing the County Executive has submitted a Declaration of Need, which requires Legislative approval.

March 2017 Column - Residents living near ‘Zombie Properties’ should see improvements

My office recently participated in a conference to discuss New York State’s Foreclosure Relief Act and how it can remove “Zombie Properties” from your neighborhood. There isn’t a single community in Western New York that is immune to this vacant house problem and that is why towns, the county and state are combining resources to address this issue.

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.