Rogowsky breaks with Dems, says he regrets budget override

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Rogowsky shown here with former County Executive Andy Spano.

One of the longest serving Democrats on the Board of Legislators says he regrets siding with colleagues on a budget dispute that is heading to court.

Legislator Martin Rogowsky, a Harrison Democrat who in December was the decisive twelfth vote on an override of County Executive Rob Astorino’s rejection of the Section 8 Housing Program, today said board members were spending too much time fighting with each other and the county executive on this issue.

“It’s a mess that we could have foreseen. … The mess just grows and grows,” said Rogowsky, who has served for 13 years including four as majority leader. “I could have avoided all of this.”

“I wish we weren’t going through this mess, debating attorneys fees,” he added. “We have larger issues.”

Rogowsky’s comments came during — and after — a committee meeting this morning where legislators argued for hours over various aspects of hiring outside lawyers to represent the board and county executive in a lawsuit with Civil Service Employees Association.

CSEA, the union representing 38 workers laid off after Astorino canceled a contract to administer the program with the state, sued the county executive and the board in state court.

A court hearing is scheduled for Thursday.

Read more tomorrow in The Journal News.

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