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White Plains Has Suggestions for County's Surplus

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. - News that the county had $67.3 million more than anticipated in its surplus funds hit White Plains Monday and many, including Famiglia Pizzeria's co-founder Paul Kolaj, could think of a few uses for the money.

"Any money they can invest in creating more jobs has a trickle- down effect," said Kolaj, 46, while stepping outside of his White Plains office for a "vitamin D" break. "Keep the economy going. Invest in programs to help hiring and support small businesses with tax incentives."

Westchester announced Monday that the county would spend $4.4 million of the $71.7 million surplus funds it anticipated would be needed for fiscal year 2010. The unspent $67.3 million will remain in surplus and “rainy day” funds designed for emergencies.

White Plains resident Marc Resnik said at least 80 percent of the $67.3 million should be spent.

"Half of it should go towards hiring people and half to lowering taxes," said Resnick, 42. "The other 20 percent can be for rooting out corruption... They could certainly have a moratorium on tax increases for home owners and businesses."

Resnick thought balancing the budget was important, however, he said that didn't have to involve saving the $67.3 million.

"They could not allow any legislator to have a pay raise or vacation until they balance the budget," said Resnick, 42. "They'd balance it in a week."

Democratic legislators who announced the new surplus funds calculations Monday said they aimed to lower taxes. Republican County Executive Rob Astorino also hopes to provide taxpayers some relief, according to his press representative Ned McCormack. However, the county government has no current plans for spending the $67.3 million surplus funds or for directing it towards tax-trimming policies.

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