Hauppauge - (WALK) Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone's proposed budget for 2014 cuts spending and freezes general fund taxes, but would increase police district taxes.
Bellone introduced a $2.76 million spending plan Friday to address a budget deficit of about $180 million. The budget would reduce total spending by 0.8 percent from 2013.
Bellone proposes hiring 60 new police officers, increasing the police district tax in Suffolk's five western towns by 2.34 percent. If approved, the average district homeowner would see their district bill increase by $20.65, to $1,015.80, according to analysts.
The plan includes privatizing more county health clinics to save approximately $3 million, and proposes transferring full-time park police officers to the SCPD and replacing them with seasonal employees and security personnel. The change, if approved by New York State, would save approximately $1 million in 2014.
The Bellone administration estimates sales tax revenue to increase by 6.7 percent this year and 3.9 percent in 2014. Revenue from a new video slot machine facility (target opening date in September '14) is estimated at $4 million; revenue from traffic tickets and red light camera receipts is estimated at $15 million.
Bellone's proposed budget also indicates Suffolk would save approximately $3 million by deferring debt payments, if approved by the state.
Photo: Suffolk County's H. Lee Dennison office building/ Suffolk County