You heard it here first in Long Island Life & Politics months ago, when we exposed that Suffolk County was sitting on over $700 million in surplus funds at the same time it was pondering increasing the county sales tax. https://lilifepolitics.com/opinion-editorials/suffolk-poised-to-increase-sales-tax-even-though-its-sitting-on-700m-in-cash-reserves/
Yet few, if any, other media outlets picked up on this revelation. In fact, one of our reporters met with a legislator and a Newsday reporter to unveil this information, and yet it was totally ignored by the island’s major daily newspaper.
We can only surmise that Newsday has not reported on this in detail previously because they don’t want people focusing on all of this money available within the budget as they lend their support for the proposed sales tax increase.
Reporting on the fact that the county is awash in money would undercut their editorials calling for the public to vote to increase the sales tax purportedly to fund more sewers. While our editorial board is in favor of building sewers as well, we ask why in the world would we increase the sales tax when the county is sitting on nearly $1 billion that can be used for that purpose.
Some claim that our information was faulty, but now the submission of the Nassau County 2024 budget this past week verifies that the counties are sitting on record amounts of surplus money due to the billions in Covid-related grants that were handed out by the federal government.
The revelation that Nassau is sitting on $900 million in reserves was tucked away near the end of their article about the county budget. Why wouldn’t it be in the first paragraph since this is so remarkably unusual?
Long Island Life & Politics reported months ago that both counties have been the beneficiaries of hundreds of millions of dollars in grants from the federal government, as well as historically high sales tax revenues that were collected due to an economy placed on steroids with all of the federal grants given directly to families and residents.
In fact, we reported that Suffolk County experienced a colossal 23% increase in sales tax year-to-year in 2021 that resulted in hundreds of millions of unexpected dollars flowing into the county coffers.
Suffolk will lay out its budget presentation this coming Friday. It, too, will show massive reserves. There is no reason why either county would have to even consider a tax increase. In fact, they should be cutting taxes.
Under no circumstances should Suffolk even be considering an increase in the sales tax, as it is sitting on these record surpluses. Suffolk’s Republican majority should be ashamed for its likely support of the Democrats’ push to increase the sales tax.