ITHACA, N.Y. (WENY) -- Tompkins County can now spend taxpayer dollars on affordable housing.

A bill signed by Governor Cuomo last week amends New York State county law, now allowing counties to contract for the purpose "of affordable housing development, maintenance, or management," according to the bill's memo.

Previously, Tompkins County had to rely on resources from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. But the county will now be able to supplement that federal funding with local funds.

"We've been working on this for almost two years, since we learned that state law was unclear about counties' authority to use their own funds to support affordable housing," Tompkins County Legislature Chair Martha Robertson told the Ithaca Journal. "We're delighted that the governor has signed the bill, especially as we begin our budget deliberations for 2020."

County Administrator Jason Molino will present options for the county's Housing and Economic Development Committee to consider at its September 26 meeting.