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Karen's Plan: Championing Fiscal Responsibility And Core Services For New Castle County

 

As your candidate for New Castle County Executive, I am dedicated to maintaining fiscal responsibility while ensuring the efficient delivery of core services. My eight-year tenure as President of New Castle County Council has equipped me with the expertise to navigate our County's complex financial landscape. I have consistently opposed unnecessary tax increases, demonstrated by my vote against a proposed 15% tax hike in 2018, advocating instead for prudent financial management and oversight. My commitment is to excellence in governance, focusing on core services without raising taxes. As County Executive, I will prioritize transparency, accountability, and strategic financial planning to ensure New Castle County remains financially stable and thriving, without imposing additional burdens on our taxpayers. Experience matters, and together, we can build a stronger, more resilient New Castle County.

Karen Hartley-Nagle: Championing Fiscal Responsibility and Core Services for New Castle County

As a candidate for New Castle County Executive, I am committed to maintaining fiscal responsibility while ensuring the efficient delivery of core services. My experience as the President of New Castle County Council for the past eight years has equipped me with the expertise and knowledge necessary to navigate the complex financial landscape of our county. Throughout my tenure, I have supported, advocated for, written, and sponsored numerous legislative initiatives aimed at enhancing the quality of life for our residents without burdening them with unnecessary tax increases.

A Proven Track Record of Fiscal Prudence

In June 2018, after a thorough review of our finances and consultation with financial

experts, I voted against a proposed 15% tax hike phased over two years. My decision was

based on a careful analysis that determined the tax increase was unnecessary. The current

administration has significantly expanded our government, funding initiatives and

services that should be managed at the state level. Additionally, the administration

allocated substantial portions of the CARES Act and ARPA funding to state initiatives,

rather than focusing on solid infrastructure projects and forward-thinking initiatives that

would have provided long-term benefits to our county.

I have been a vocal opponent of this unfettered use of one-time federal pandemic funds,

advocating for strict Council oversight, financial restraint, and thoughtful decision-making.

Unfortunately, the majority of the Council voted to relinquish its power, weakening our

ability to ensure these valuable funds were used to bolster key areas and leave us in a position of strength.

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A Commitment to Core Services and No Tax Increases

As County Executive, my focus will be on excellence in government and adherence to our core services without raising taxes. New Castle County's major revenues are derived from real estate taxes and sewer charges and fees. For Fiscal Year 2024, the total anticipated resources are $331,422,408, including available cash balances of $13,383,359. The total operating budget is $342,427,908, a 3% increase from the previous year’s budget, with no tax or sewer rate increases. Additionally, the county's capital budget totals $34,207,715.

Despite the expanded government expenditures left by the current administration, my plan as County Executive will include strategic financial management to avoid raising taxes. This involves reassessing and realigning our spending priorities, focusing on core services, and filling all departmental employee vacancies to ensure efficient and effective service delivery.

A Vision for New Castle County’s Financial Future

By maintaining a steadfast commitment to fiscal responsibility, we can ensure that New Castle County remains financially stable while continuing to provide essential services to our residents. My administration will prioritize transparency, accountability, and prudent financial management, ensuring that every dollar spent serves the best interests of our community. Together, we can build a stronger, more resilient New Castle County without placing additional financial burdens on our taxpayers.

Experience Matters. Let’s work together for a fiscally responsible and thriving New Castle County.

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