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Tioga delivers State of the County address

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TIOGA COUNTY, N.Y. -

Tioga County's State of the County address was delivered Tuesday evening, where Legislative Chairwoman Martha Sauerbrey covered the progress and challenges the county faced in the past year. 

Sauerbrey said many of the challenges the county is facing is coming down from the state.

"Most of those challenges are coming down from the state with mandates that we did not ask for that cost the county time and money to take care of and then we have to turn around and run our counties and stay under the tax. So it’s a very big challenge to do so and we have to figure that out," said Sauerbrey.

Another challenge the county is tackling is an increase in flooding as a result of the climate changing, according to Sauerbrey.

In terms of progress, Sauerbrey praises the county's economic development team for their work in the past year. 

"Our economic development team is doing a great job of bringing jobs and opportunities to Tioga County," said Sauerbrey. "Last year our economic development department brought in $13.5 million to Tioga County."

"Currently, we are assisting with the downtown revitalization initiative for the village of Owego. Some of our economic development staff is helping them collect data and put that together," added Sauerbrey.

The county also making progress in tackling drug and alcohol abuse, according to Sauerbrey.

"The opioid issue is certainly a challenge," said Sauerbrey. "We have some organizations in place that are making a difference and the death rate from opioids have gone down from the last two years."

Overall, the Sauerbrey said Tioga County had a very good year in 2018.

"Our sales tax revenue was 16.5% which was the second highest in the state of New York. That is largely because we are on the border of Pennsylvania. Our gasoline is cheaper in New York than it is in Pennsylvania and so people from Pennsylvania are coming to New York to buy gas which is the complete opposite of what has been for years," said Sauerbrey.