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Bianco Calls for Moratorium on Mandates

YORKTOWN, N.Y.--  Councilman Nick Bianco held a press conference Wednesday calling for a moratorium on mandates, which he called “stumbling blocks” for the town.

“I’m not debating the wisdom of the laws, I’m asking for a moratorium on the laws,” Bianco said.

Bianco urged others to write letters to the mandate relief committee, like he did, asking for this moratorium.

“We can’t wait for them to decide which mandate is good, which mandate is bad. We feel that many of them are bad,” Bianco said. “As well intentioned as they may have been, they are not today, in 2011, incumbent in what we are trying to do.”

Bianco was joined by Yorktown Supervisor Susan Siegel, Town Clerk Alice Roker and Councilman Terrence Murphy, who each called for the moratorium as well.

“These laws came about at a time years ago, and I think that we really need to do is take another look at the laws to see how they effect the local governments, and not just the town governments, but also fire departments, school districts,” Roker said. “We need a reevaluation of these laws and whether or not these are policies that really help this state.”

With budget season fast approaching, Murphy said there was no time to waste for the moratorium to be implemented.

“I think it’s totally strangling New York State, period.,” Murphy said. “This has got to get done as soon as possible.”

Siegel said she believes the state has all the information about the effect it has on the towns, but chooses to ignore it.

“I’m getting very cynical, they have all of this information. They just refuse to act,” she said. “They get the glory, they passed the tax cap, they are your heroes. Wait until you see our budget”

Bianco specifically referenced four mandates, including the Wicks Law, Tort Law, prevailing wage and limitation on deposits—all of which he reiterated were at a time well-intentioned, but not at a time when the town and other governments are facing a two percent tax cap.

“We need relief if they are going to dictate what we are going to do,” he said. “ This year, while the tax cap is here, they’ve got to stop putting impediments in front of us”

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