Attention: Grants Available For Counties Cities, Towns And Villages

Neil D. Breslin

I am pleased to provide you with information on the 2008-2009 Local Government Efficiency (LGE) Program. Applications are now available and may be downloaded from the New York State Department of State's website or by calling the Division of Local Government Services at (518) 473-3355.

This year counties, cities, towns, local villages, special improvement districts, fire districts, library districts, water authorities, sewer authorities, regional planning and development boards, school districts, and in certain instances Boards of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) will be eligible for projects that promote shared services, cooperative agreements, consolidations, mergers and dissolutions. The grant program has been expanded to include a noncompetitive High Priority Planning Grant in addition to three types of competitive grants.

High Priority Planning Grants are for a city or a county charter revision that includes functional consolidations or increased shared services; municipal mergers; consolidations or dissolutions, countywide shared services or the transfer of local functions to the county, and multi-county or regional services. For village dissolutions or charter revisions, a single applicant may apply.

General Efficiency Planning Grants are competitive grants to help identify and study opportunities to improve local government efficiency and cost savings, including health plan consolidations.

Efficiency Implementation Grants are competitive grants to assist applicants implementing plans to improve local government efficiency and cost savings. Transitional personnel costs essential for the implementation are allowed for a period of up to three years

21st Century Demonstration Projects are competitive grants which promote large-scale, transformative change in municipalities and that can be used as living laboratories for municipal innovation. This may include consolidation of services on a multi-county basis, consolidation of certain services countywide, 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, BOCES-wide consolidation of school districts or school district services or the creation of a regional smart growth compact or program.

The High Priority Planning grant has a rolling deadline process, the deadlines are: October 8, 2008, November 12, 2008, December 10, 2008, January 14, 2009, February 11, 2009 and March 11, 2009. Grant applications must be submitted by 4:00pm. Applications will be reviewed and grantees selected each month. The submission deadline for the other three grant types is January 14, 2009, at 4:00pm. All inquiries about the grant program should be directed to the LGE Program Manager at (518) 473-3355, or 1-800-367-8488.

A regional workshop to provide information on the elements of the LGE grant program, sponsored by the NYS Department of State will be held on October 10, 2008 at the University at Albany, 1400 Washington Avenue from 9:00am-4:00pm (lunch included). Register on-line by going to or call the NYS Division of Local Government Services at (518) 473-3355.