Competition Aims to Spur Local Government Consolidation

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) -

The Cuomo administration is offering a $20 million award for local governments that come up with the best plan for saving money and cutting property taxes by sharing municipal services.

Under the Municipal Consolidation and Efficiency Competition, teams of two or more local governments will submit plans for sharing services and reducing property taxes. The prize money will support the municipal actions. A winner will be announced in August.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the competition on Thursday. He said the goal is to get local governments to band together and streamline their bureaucracies to deliver real relief to taxpayers.

The Democrat first proposed the competition in his State of the State and budget address last January.