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Genesee County Treasurer Scott German

March 18, 2021 - 11:53am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, Genesee County Treasurer Scott German.

Although sales tax receipts continue to lag compared to last year’s figures, Genesee County Treasurer Scott German said he is optimistic that 2021 will prove to be financially robust.

“The county continues to receive less sales tax than 2020 – receipts are down about 9 percent for the first three months -- but hopefully as business continues to reopen sales tax will get stronger,” German said. “The county adopted a fiscally conservative budget for 2021 and, barring any other catastrophe, county finances should end in 2021 strong.”

German, in presenting his departmental report Wednesday to the Genesee County Legislature’s Ways & Means Committee, emphasized that the county’s decision to adopt a “conservative” budget for the 2021 fiscal year (Jan. 1-Dec. 31) will go a long way in stabilizing its economic picture as the COVID-19 pandemic subsides.

“Last year was very tumultuous,” he said, noting that state officials projected a 20- to 30-percent loss in sales tax and 20-percent decrease in state aid. “Remarkably, however, our sales tax revenues declined by only 2.66 percent from 2019.”

His report indicated that the county shared 16 percent or $6.5 million of the sales tax amount received with the City of Batavia, and that New York State has approved additional withholdings from the county’s share of sales tax revenues for 2021 for a distressed provider assistance fund.

German also mentioned that the county received a boost from the first federal stimulus package as its Medicaid shares resulted in a savings of $900,000.

At the end of 2020, the county had an unassigned balance of $14,644,551, a decrease of $520,514 from 2019, German reported. Meanwhile, the county’s self-insurance fund reserves went up from $743,193 at the end of 2019 to $1,493,261 at the close of 2020, with the increase attributed to a drop in medical procedures.

The county received $58,863 more in mortgage taxes in 2020 compared to 2019, he said.

Looking ahead, German said the $11.1 million allocated to the county through the American Rescue Plan will be divided into equal installments in 2021 and 2022. The utilization of these funds has yet to be determined, he added.

In a related development, Kevin Andrews, director of Real Property Tax Services, reported home sales are “trending up” and that most of the county’s towns and villages are working on reassessment projects for the 2021 assessment rolls.

Last year, RPTS supported reassessments in the towns of Bergen, Byron, Elba, Oakfield and Stafford, while similar projects in the City of Batavia and towns of Alexander, Batavia, Bethany, Darien, Le Roy, Pavilion and Pembroke were canceled due to COVID-19, Andrews said.

November 5, 2020 - 10:56am

 

german_award.jpg

With a company name of three+one, it was appropriate that four members of the Pittsford investment firm’s leadership team traveled to Batavia on Wednesday to present Genesee County Treasurer Scott German with the National Leadership Award for his role in maximizing the municipality’s assets.

Company CEO/Co-founder Joe Rulison, Vice President Garrett Macdonald, Relationship Specialist Alex DeRosa and Public Partnerships Director William Cherry each spoke of German’s exemplary efforts.

The presentation took place at the start of the County Legislature’s Ways & Means Committee meeting at the Old County Courthouse.

“This is a really special time for us to come together and honor the county … honor Treasurer Scott German for excellence in leadership across the nation,” said Macdonald, a Batavia native. “We have partnership with the National Association of Counties and we’re looking for counties that have exemplified strategic liquidity management for their taxpayers. We really couldn’t think of a better treasurer to honor than Scott German.”

The county treasurer’s office has been working with three+one for just over three years, Macdonald said, adding that his firm has agreements with county governments across the United States.

He credited German for considering any and all prospects of saving money for taxpayers.

“When it comes to looking at every single opportunity to earn and save on the taxpayer dollar, whether it be investment for a week, two weeks, a month, two months, longer, it’s a lot of work to look for opportunities to create value for the taxpayers,” he said. “And that’s what we’re all here for – to create value for taxpayers.”

Macdonald said that over the past 12 months, the county’s liquidity analysis and management practices have resulted in a benefit of $1 million “when (interest) rates were little to nothing.”

“That one million dollars, looking at the county’s tax levy for 2021 of about 31 million dollars, equates to about 2.89 percent – which would mean having to raise taxes in order to generate that kind of income,” he said.

Rulison emphasized German’s commitment to the firm’s “cutting-edge” strategies and recognized the impact German has had on other financial officers.

“It’s amazing to know that you adopted it (three years ago) and he (German) has taken it and implemented it,” Rulison said. “I can’t tell you how significant that is. There is only one person in the country that gets this award. And we’re thrilled for it to be able to be your treasurer, Scott German.”

Rulison recalled a phone call he received from a person from Washington who attended, along with German, a conference in the Midwest.

“Who is Scott German, the person said. I said he’s the treasurer of Genesee County. He goes, ‘He resonates what is a best practice that should be followed nationally.’ And he goes, ‘I think seeing that he is able to give and show his experience to others, is what really is going to be incredible – and that helped us to become a part of the National Association of Counties.’”

Cherry, retired Schoharie County treasurer and former president of the New York Association of Counties, said that he has known German for about 20 years, noting the latter’s participation in the state County Treasurers Association.

“Scott is always the first in line to want to learn how to do something better – best practices put into place – and he’s recognized throughout the country,” he said.

DeRosa said Genesee County has set a great example for him in his two years with three+one.

“I couldn’t think of a better example, a better county government for me to learn from – not only in your liquidity management practices but just how you treat your staff and it’s clear that you are a family together,” he said. “It’s truly going above and beyond the call of duty to make sure the taxpayers are getting that maximum value – and it’s an incredible example for counties across the state and the country.”

Afterward, German said he was surprised to learn that he was this year’s recipient of the award and said it is all about being responsible to county residents.

“I worked with them now for just over three years, and it’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it to my taxpayers. They pay me to do what I do so I’m doing what I can for them,” he said, noting that the county has earned around $3 million through its partnership with three+one.

Photo: From left, Alex DeRosa, Joe Rulison, County Treasurer Scott German, Garrett Macdonald and William Cherry. Photo by Mike Pettinella.

July 17, 2015 - 2:11pm

Press release:

Scott German, Genesee County treasurer, recently attended the annual meeting of the National Association of County Collectors, Treasurers and Finance Officers (NACCTFO) in Charlotte, N.C., on July 8th and 9th, completing professional certification coursework in public policy administration.

The conference included education courses in policy and management, offered by the Public Policy Administration program at the University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) as part of their Chancellor’s Certificate program and in partnership with NACCTFO.

“Our Chancellor’s certificate program allows NACCTFO members to learn about cutting-edge practices, and share their experiences,” said Deborah Balser, Ph.D., associate professor, and director of the Public Policy Administration program at UMSL. “Members come away from these sessions with valuable ideas to implement in their own office.”

The coursework included short-term investing, diversity in the workplace, evaluating employees, and courthouse security. German’s participation in these sessions demonstrates his commitment to carefully manage scarce county resources, Balser said.

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