As counties continue to vocalize opposition to aspects of the Governor’s proposed budget, the Lower Shore delegation has come forward in opposition the current provision that shifts $239 million in pension costs to the counties. A recent article featured in The Daily Times, shares the view points of Senators Colburn and Mathias, along with Delegates Conway, McDermott, and Otto.
Sen. Rich Colburn, R-37-Wicomico, said many counties would be left with no choice but to raise taxes to absorb the cost.
“It’s the trickle-down theory — which is more like a rapidly-moving waterfall — where the federal government is shifting cuts to the states,” he said. “The states inevitably pass it on to the counties and municipalities. I don’t know of any county that can afford pick up a dollar of this. This would be the straw that would break the backs of most county budgets.”
Delegate Mike McDermott, R-38B-Worcester, called it “a terrible idea at this point in time, (with) the county budgets being what they are.”
“I’m concerned what mandate that’s putting down to the county governments,” said Delegate Charles Otto, R-38A-Somerset. “There’s probably some merit to some type of shift, but we can’t do it in the times that we face now, with the budget crisis that our local governments are in.”