ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Monroe County Executive Adam Bello’s attempt to veto two amendments in the county budget fell short Thursday night. One amendment would set up a $2.5 million contingency fund. The other overrides Bello’s proposed cuts to the Monroe County Board of Elections.
Members of the Monroe County Legislature overrode Bello’s vetoes during a special meeting Thursday evening.
The budget passed unanimously on Tuesday, but Bello opted not to sign it at the time. He announced his intention to veto on Thursday, but Monroe County Legislature President Joe Carbone called a special meeting to address the issue.
In that meeting, the vetoes were overridden and the budget was adopted with the amendments.
Bello released a statement after the meeting, saying:
The County Legislature leadership came to me with an ultimatum, either I could choose where the money came from for their fund or they had the votes lined up to slash County departments to make it happen. I worked in good faith to protect the taxpayers of our community to identify areas that would ensure the least amount of damage to our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as other critical programs and services. To suggest that creating this fund was my idea is outrageous, not true and defies logic. Taxpayers deserve better than politics as usual, and I will stand up for taxpayers every day of the week.
Tonight’s override vote, scheduled with less than 15 minutes notice and after regular business hours, represents the old way of operating County government. This is just the latest example of the County Legislature prioritizing their power and political games over the residents of Monroe County.
— Monroe County Executive Adam Bello