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DEBRIEF: Yates County Administrator talks economic fallout, budget process amid Coronavirus Pandemic (podcast)

Dealing with the Coronavirus Pandemic has been difficult for communities across New York State.

Undoubtedly, small communities like Yates County are those that could feel the most-adverse impact from the financial fallout associated with the Coronavirus. Especially given how heavily-reliant counties like Yates are on sales tax revenue.

However, that is not the case. Long-term planning over the last several months – dating all the way back to March and April – have insulated the county from dealing with significant, harsh ramifications caused by the pandemic.

According to Nonie Flynn, Yates County Administrator, it has taken a true team approach to ensuring that the County’s financials maintain themselves into 2021. “I think about the taxpayers who cannot afford even a $50 increase in property taxes,” she explained during a recent appearance on The Debrief.

“We started back in April, with a lot of cuts from the economic fallout,” she explained. “So we did a lot of reductions beginning in in April to avert any permanent cuts later this year and into next year. And our department heads were great in cooperating with us on that. And that’s just carried on into the budget for 2021. And they they knew they had to bring their budgets in on what you need basis and not what do you want for next year, and every department head was really great with that.”

She says that uncertainty connected to 20% reductions in local aid would mean a couple million dollars. To that end, Flynn has positioned Yates in such a way financially that it will be ready for the next two years. She says support from the Yates County Legislature has proven invaluable in that effort, in addition to the help issued by department heads.