Supervisor’s Report – October 3, 2017
Yesterday it was my privilege to present to the Town Board the Tentative Budget for 2018. I believe it’s a fair document that will allow us to effectively provide essential Town services while maintaining an approach that is fiscally prudent and safeguards the use of taxpayer funds. Revenue projections are conservative while expenditures are carefully calculated to ensure the continued delivery of essential services. The amount of total taxes to be levied is $9,177,300.00, a tax increase of 0.94%. This tax increase keeps us $243,576.00 (or 2.59%) below the New York State Property Tax Cap.
Some highlights of the 2018 Tentative Budget include:
- No reduction in essential services;
- Increased funding ($100,000) for infrastructure repair and replacement, including paving and paving-related work, the replacement of water mains and repair of culverts;
- $50,000 for the Revaluation of Assessments;
- $50,000 to contract for grant writing and administration services;
- Additional funds for Information Technology, including a system to notify residents of emergencies, switching Town Hall email to an internal server for increased security, creating remote access for the Department of Public Works, and the funding of fiber optic cable for Town Hall;
- $50,000 for a structural assessment of Town Hall;
- $10,000 for beautification projects for Columbia Turnpike.
A number of factors are responsible for the proposed tax increase, including
- The rising cost of health insurance for employees;
- The rising cost of the Town’s municipal insurance;
- 1.5% increase in salary for all union employees;
- An increase of the cost of water from Troy;
- Major debt service commitments;
- Increase in energy costs.
This budget was prepared by a team consisting of the Town Supervisor, the Director of Finance and the Town Comptroller. Meaghan Hart and George Phillips worked extremely hard to assist in the preparation of the Tentative Budget.