County Perspective for February 7, 2019

This week's state and federal news for NY's county leaders.

NYSAC Update

Legislative Conference: The presentations, videos, photos, and more!
Did you miss the Legislative Conference? Were you there and want to share the excellent experience with others? Here is a roundup of presentations, video, photos, and more from last week's event:
Photos- View a gallery of photos from the 2019 Legislative Conference on our Facebook page.
NYSAC 2019 Legislative Conference Wrap-up
Ethics and Integrity in Government: Workshop with Stuart Brody
2019 State Budget Workshop with Dave Lucas, NYSAC Director of Finance and Intergovernmental Relations
Cannabis Plenary Session: Presentations
View slideshows and handouts from conference workshops here.

View the January 2019 resolutions adopted by the NYSAC membership here:

News from NYSAC
NYSAC is hard at work advocating for county priorities at the state and federal level. Find our recent press releases below:
Counties Voice Concerns About NYS Marijuana Proposal
NYS Counties Urge President Trump, Congress to Avoid Another Shut Down
Four County Officials Receive Honors for Completing County Government Institute
Bipartisan Conference of NYS County Leaders Sets Priorities for 2019
NYSAC Whitepapers and Reports
Click on the report title below to view the document.
2019 State of the State and State Budget Release Highlights
Legalizing Marijuana in NYS
Cashless Bail and Other Criminal Justice Reforms
Voting Reforms in NYS

2019 Budget Priority Fact Sheets County Legislative Priorities
NYSAC's key county priority continues to be reducing the high property tax burden on New Yorkers through mandate relief. Within that top concern, NYSAC's 2019 Legislative Program and Platform include priorities within 19 policy areas. Our state advocacy platform is broad because of our wide-ranging mandated responsibilities.
View the two-page NYSAC Legislative program here.
For in-depth policy analysis, view the NYSAC Policy Platform here. 
NYSAC News magazine: Legislative Guide
The Winter 2019 issue of NYSAC News magazine is arriving in member mailboxes this week, and is now available online. This issue is full of articles about budget and policy issues impacting counties, written by our legislative staff and other experts

State Update

Albany Actions
The New York State Legislature passed fewer bills this week than last. Only two same-as bills were passed through both houses this week. The legislature spent much of their time working on a bill that prohibits offshore drilling and natural gas production in New York's coastal areas. This legislation is in response to President Trump's executive order announcing an “America-First Offshore Energy Strategy” which would include the potential lease of federal offshore areas in the Atlantic region.

On Monday, February 11, NYSAC Executive Director Stephen Acquario will deliver testimony to the joint legislative budget hearing on the county impact as it relates to the Executive Budget proposal.

NYSAC will also be submitting a 30-day budget amendment request to the Governor's office for their consideration.

DEC Coordinates Statewide Campaign to Help New York Residents Recycle Correctly
Contamination in residential recycling is a hot topic. From “wish cycling” to tanglers, plastic bags and batteries, recycling educators are tasked with the challenge of helping the public navigate a complex world of packaging and products to help them answer the question, “Is this recyclable?” 
After holding stakeholder meetings across the state, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) formed an outreach and education subcommittee to work with solid waste managers on a campaign to help residents recycle properly called Recycle Right NY. A unified message each month will make communications stronger and more effective.

The committee created a calendar for 2019 that will focus on one item each month. DEC will be providing social media, newsletters, and other materials that counties can integrate into their own recycling education programs and messaging.  
Jan Feb March April May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Tanglers (ropes, cords) Cans Textiles Food
Plastic bags & film Batteries Sharps Non-container glass Bottles & jugs Cardboard
To receive resources to promote the material of the month, contact

Federal Update

States Continue to Implement Sales Tax Fairness after the Wayfair Supreme Court Decision
Eighty percent of the states (36) that have a sales tax have enacted laws and regulations that require remote sellers to collect sales tax on items they sell over the Internet. Last summer's Wayfair decision by the U.S. Supreme Court overturned an earlier precedent on how sales tax collection practices were implemented nationwide. In their ruling the Court determined that it was necessary to overturn their earlier ruling because that ruling “…creates rather than resolves market distortions.” In addition, the Court concluded that the prior ruling resulted in, “…a judicially created tax shelter for businesses that limit their physical presence in a state but sell their goods and services to the state's consumers…” This in turn gave “…some online retailers an arbitrary advantage over their competitors who collect state sales taxes, Quill's physical presence rule has limited States' ability to seek long-term prosperity and has prevented market participants from competing on an even playing field.” For these reasons, states have moved forward to collect sales tax legally owed to them under their own laws. New York has begun a partial implementation of the Supreme Court ruling through administrative actions that remind remote sellers they are obligated to collect and remit sales tax to New York on good they sell into the state, if they meet certain sales thresholds. The Governor's proposed budget also includes a state tax law update that is designed to ease implementation of the Supreme Court ruling by making large marketplace providers the sales tax agent for all vendors using their platform. New York's counties have long supported the Governor's approach.    
NACo Response to the State of the Union
The National Association of Counties (NACo) responded to President Donald Trump's State of the Union address with the following statement from NACo Executive Director Matthew Chase:
“Counties support and echo President Trump's call for bipartisanship and unity. The need to focus on governing over politics is clear. Counties prioritize results over partisanship every day, and we urge our federal counterparts to put an end to governing by crises. 
“County officials need a reliable federal partner as we tackle complex national issues together, such as helping communities and residents left behind in our current economy. Our list is endless – from the growing substance abuse epidemic to widespread disaster recovery to rebuilding our infrastructure.

“We are on the front lines of serving our communities, providing key services like emergency 911, law enforcement, health, human services, community development, infrastructure and more. We need a steadfast federal partner to pursue our shared goals and seize the opportunities ahead.
“One of the greatest opportunities for bipartisan action at the federal level is reinvesting in America's infrastructure. For counties of all sizes – rural, urban and suburban – infrastructure is at the top of our priority list. This includes advanced broadband, water infrastructure and workforce housing.

“Counties own and maintain 46 percent of all public road miles and nearly 40 percent of all public bridges. We are involved in operating 78 percent of all public transportation systems and a third of the nation's airports.

“Delivering safe, dependable transportation infrastructure requires meaningful local-state-federal partnerships. We will work with our federal partners to preserve local decision-making, streamline federal regulations and secure direct federal investments in local infrastructure projects.

“America's counties are strengthening our communities every day. We look forward to continuing to work with the Trump Administration and Congress as we build stronger counties that result in a stronger America.”

To view NACo's 2019 federal policy priorities, click here.

Training Opportunities

NACo Webinars
NACo will be hosting several webinars on Federal issues impacting counties. For the full listing, visit

Save the Date: 53rd Annual County Finance School
May 1-3, 2019
Sheraton Syracuse University Hotel
Syracuse, New York

The County Job Board
Does your county have a job opening to share? Send it along to
Do you know someone looking for an opportunity in county government? Send them over to the NYSAC County Job Board!