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For Immediate Release:
November 17, 2015
Contact: 518-486-9846
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Over 75 Local New York State Government Officials and Community Leaders on Hand to Preview the Governor’s Municipal Restructuring Fund

New York Secretary of State Cesar A. Perales today hosted a Local Government Innovation Conference in Albany where over 75 local government and community leaders from around the state met with State officials to explore new ways to improve the delivery of services at the local level and create opportunities for financial savings and property tax reductions. The group discussed suggestions and recommendations made by over 150 local government officials at a recent series of roundtables held across the State on Governor Cuomo’s Municipal Restructuring Fund (MRF).

The MRF, which was included in the 2015-16 State Budget, will be used to fund and foster innovative and transformational local government restructuring efforts. Funds will be used to assist local governments with capital and other expenses related to the implementation of local government and school-district shared services, cooperation agreements, mergers and other actions that reduce operational costs and related property tax burdens on a permanent basis.

“I want to thank all the local government and community leaders, as well as all these informative speakers and presenters, for participating in this important conference,” said Secretary of State Perales. “By sharing such valuable insight, we hope to spur ideas and continue to work together to foster the implementation of innovative projects to make government more efficient.”

At the conference, local officials shared best practices, learned about ideas and initiatives that have been successful in other regions of the country, and collaborated with state officials and planning experts to explore opportunities to make the delivery of local government services and programs more efficient.

The conference was highlighted by a keynote address titled “Importance of Innovation in Local Government” by the renowned national expert in government efficiency, Richard A. Mullaney, the Founding Director of the Jacksonville University Public Policy Institute. Other speakers and presenters included:

The Secretary of State is responsible for developing the application process for the new MRF. Participants at the conference received a preliminary description of the application process, which will be finalized in the coming weeks, after taking into account the comments and suggestions received at today’s conference. The MRF will assist local governments in developing new approaches that span wider borders and bring new opportunities for significant change to entire regions. The MRF program will help to lower the cost of government and reduce the burden placed on property taxpayers.

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