Relates to twenty-first century demonstration project grants.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the state finance law, in relation to twenty-first century demonstration project grants
PURPOSE: To expand the Twenty-First Century Demonstration Project Grant program in order to broaden the opportunities for transformative local government efficiency projects.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Amends Section 54(10)(o) of the State Finance Law to revise the Twenty-First Century Demonstration Project Grant program: it would increase the maximum grant award to 5700,000 per participating municipality (instead of $400,000); and it would specify that funds may be used for the creation of a regional shared services program.
JUSTIFICATION: The Local Government Efficiency Grant Program was established to encourage and assist municipalities to implement programs to consolidate governmental units and to consolidate or share services and programs. The program established a maximum limit on the size of a grant that could be awarded. However, the program also authorized larger grants for projects that have "great potential to achieve financial savings and serve as a model for other municipalities." These are called Twenty-First Century Demonstration Projects.
In general, concerns have been raised that the program has been underutilized, and that many of the awards have simply funded consolidation studies, many of which were never implemented. By increasing the size of the grant that could be awarded, and by specifying that regional shared services programs are eligible, this bill seeks to generate renewed interest in the program and to encourage municipalities to pursue larger projects that have the potential for significant benefits and would serve as a model for other communities.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: This bill would allow the awarding of a larger grant for a regional 21st Century Demonstration Project. However, it would not affect the overall spending level for the program, which would remain subject to annual budget appropriations.
EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5449 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE May 16, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. FARLEY -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Finance AN ACT to amend the state finance law, in relation to twenty-first century demonstration project grants THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subparagraph (v) of paragraph o of subdivision 10 of section 54 of the state finance law, as added by section 7 of part O of chapter 56 of the laws of 2008, is amended to read as follows: (v) Twenty-first century demonstration project grants. (1) Within the amounts appropriated therefor, subject to a plan developed in consulta- tion with the commission on local government efficiency and competitive- ness and approved by the director of the budget, the secretary of state may award competitive grants to municipalities to cover costs associated with a functional consolidation or a shared services agreement having great potential to achieve financial savings and serve as a model for other municipalities, including the consolidation of services on a multi-county basis, the consolidation of certain services countywide as identified in such plan, the creation of a regional entity empowered to provide multiple functions on a countywide or regional basis, the creation of a regional or city-county consolidated municipal government, THE CREATION OF A REGIONAL SHARED SERVICES PROGRAM, the consolidation of school districts or supporting services for school districts encompass- ing the area served by a board of cooperative educational services, or the creation of a regional smart growth compact or program. (2) Twenty-first century demonstration project grants may be used to cover costs including, but not limited to, legal and consultant services, capital improvements, transitional personnel costs essential for the implementation of the approved twenty-first century demon- stration project grant work plan, and other necessary expenses. Grants may be used for capital improvements, transitional personnel costs orEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD10961-01-3 S. 5449 2
joint equipment purchases only where such expenses are integral to the coordinated or consolidated service delivery. (3) The maximum twenty-first century demonstration project grant awarded shall not exceed
[four]SEVEN hundred thousand dollars per muni- cipality. Award amounts may vary by grant category as identified in the request for applications. (4) Local matching funds equal to ten percent of the total cost of activities under the grant work plan approved by the department of state shall be required. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.