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Poloncarz: Collins' claims are 'nothing more than political hyperbole'

Today, Erie County Comptroller Mark C. Poloncarz issued a report analyzing the Erie County Legislature's proposed amendments to the 2011 county budget, which restore $4 million to the libraries and $1.2 million to local cultural agencies. The amendments, which were funded by cuts in other areas of the budget that the Legislature deemed nonessential, were charactarized by Erie County Executive Chris Collins as irresponsible. Furthermore, in a series of radio advertisements and robo-calls, Collins suggested that the Legislature's amendments (which actually decrease the county's 2011 budget by about $100,000), would result in a tax increase.

Legislature democrats and the local cultural community strenuously countered that notion, characterizing it as a scare tactic meant to frighten constituents into supporting cultural funding cuts. Now Poloncarz, a political rival to Collins, has released a report analyzing those additions. Poloncarz found that the "cuts and adoptions were enacted appropriately by the Legislature, within its full power, and no tax increase should occur as a result of the Legislature's actions."

"Any statements that the 2011 Amended Budget, as adopted by the Legislature, would result in a tax increase are not based in fact and are nothing more than political hyperbole," Poloncarz wrote earlier in the report.

Read the whole thing here:

--Colin Dabkowski

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