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February 20, 2015 @ 12:00 am EST
Our speaker at LIMBA this Friday morning was Suffolk County Comptroller John Kennedy. Mr. Kennedy began by telling us of his experience in the ranks of labor as a lineman for Broadway Maintenance. He was inspired to get a college education and enrolled in St Johns law school. Later he studied municipal finance and had other educational life experiences. After establishing his credentials Kennedy gave us his take on his current position.
Among the most important things that must be accomplished is the building out of sewers and stewardship of the environment. We must make sure that money exists for those purposes. Without the support structures business cannot grow and flourish. He stressed that small business cannot be neglected.
Streamlining government by putting in place modern accounting methods and easy access to information brings down cost. According to Kennedy our method of recording land sales was “little different than it was when the Mayflower landed”. Today that information can be obtained from any computer or any sophisticated mobile device.
Getting the value we expect for the taxpayers dollar is the primary goal of the comptroller. A carton of 100 pencils better contain 100 pencils. Ferreting out waste and disposing of poor performing venders saves the taxpayers money. Discrepancies with vendors where the County was overcharged will be corrected in a reasonable period of time or the County will take them to court. Venders in turn will be paid within 60 days if they submit the winning bid.
Creating policies that promote the idea of home ownership is important to Kennedy and he has asked for policies that make it possible.
The comptroller’s office is staffed by a crew of 62 people. Recent additions have been in auditing. The payroll for auditing is well worth the expense. They find fraud, duplication and unnecessary spending that often amounts to millions.
He cited a statistic that 100% of the audits done by NY State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli were in some small or big way deficient.
Our staff for today’s program was Annette Krause, Marguerite Moore, Ken Nevor, Michelle Zere, Bill Miller and Ernie Fazio.
Cinematographer was Verizon FIOS Josh Wein working in Waldo Cabrera’s unit excerpts will appear on FIOS next week.