Albany, N.Y., February 15—New York State Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) and area Assemblymen Phil Palmesano (R-C, Corning) and Chris Friend (R-Big Flats) reminded the region’s local officials today that the deadline for submitting applications for the state’s 2011-2012 Local Efficiency Grant Program is March 21, 2012.
The program, administered by the state Department of State (DOS), seeks to help local governments reduce property taxes through efficiency initiatives including shared services. The program has provided more than $50 million in funding to 324 projects over the past six years and generated a projected cost savings to municipalities of $560 million.
O’Mara, Palmesano and Friend encouraged local leaders to take advantage of the state assistance to improve the organization and delivery of local services.
“Every level of government is being asked to do more with less. This successful grant program has helped many local governments, including governments throughout the communities we represent, become more effective, more efficient and less costly to local property taxpayers. Local leaders play a critical role in the statewide effort to reduce the size and cost of government,” the area lawmakers said.
When the application process for the 2011-2012 program was announced last fall, Chemung County Executive Tom Santulli said, “The sharing of services and resources has always been a priority in Chemung County. With the assistance of a New York State Local Government Efficiency Grant, we completed a study examining the opportunities for the sharing of highway maintenance services and equipment consolidation county-wide. This grant will help us reconfigure and make more efficient the services provided by our various municipal highway departments and ultimately result in the saving of taxpayer dollars.”
The Local Government Efficiency Grant program is a competitive grant program aimed at cutting municipal costs and lowering local property taxes by helping local governments plan for and deliver services more efficiently and cost effectively. Grants are awarded for both planning and implementation assistance. According to DOS, applications must demonstrate an examination of financial savings, return on public investment, and management improvements resulting from project implementation.
The submission deadline for the Local Government Efficiency Grant program is 4:00 p.m. on March 21, 2012. More information and applications are available on the DOS website at: http://www.dos.ny.gov/lg/lge/grant.html 
Prospective applicants can also obtain applications by calling (518) 473-3355 or 1-800-367-8488.