While the County Council voted 7-0 to change the binding arbitration for employees with three amendments, County Executive John R. Leopold, vetoed the amendments. This effectively reverted the bill to it’s original form which he has just signed into law this afternoon, angered 4 members of the County Council and enraged the employee unions who were opposed to the original bill, but were somewhat placated by the amended one.
From a press release just issued:
County Executive John R. Leopold today signed legislation into law that protects taxpayers and preserves the role of the County Council as the final authority over taxpayer funds.
“This legislation ensures that all County employees sacrifice equally during these difficult economic times,” County Executive Leopold said. “Elected officials who represent the taxpayers must have the final say on issues that affect our tax rate, level of services, and staffing. It is critical that we not leave these decisions in the hands of an outside party.”
County Executive Leopold used an item veto on three amendments passed by the County Council.
“These amendments would have caused havoc with the County budget process and could potentially compel either an increase in income taxes or layoffs of County employees,” County Executive Leopold said. “Absent Council approval of additional revenue, these amendments could require significant reductions in all areas of the budget, including education.”