The County Board of Legislators passed a bi-partisan 2018 budget, by a 12-5 vote, that eliminates cuts to Westchester County Parks staff proposed by the outgoing Astorino Administration and, overall, puts Westchester back on a responsible fiscal path. ( See our previous coverage.)
The budget includes an increase to the tax levy of 2%, which translates to an estimated $25-$35 per year increase to the average homeowner, the cost of just a few movies. Meanwhile, park curators who provide excellent earth science, biology, and history lessons to young and old, will continue to work in the park system.
Legislator Catharine Parker notes, “During the weeks leading up to the budget vote, I heard from many residents that they do not ask much from county government, but one service that they greatly appreciated and valued were from park curators. I was only too happy to support them by my vote.”
The new budget also funds other important services including: hiring engineers who will get to work on infrastructure projects; hiring much-needed public safety officers so our parks and roads are protected; helping to provide affordable child care for Westchester’s working families; and funding cost-effective programs that work to prevent domestic violence.
View the 2018 final budget agreement here.
Joyce H. Newman is an Emmy Award-winning environmental journalist, educator, and gardener. She holds a Certificate in Horticulture from The New York Botanical Garden, and is a tour guide there.