Village trustees last week said they would approve the $3.19 million budget, which calls for a no tax increase, at their next meeting on April 16. Property owners will pay the same $6.76 per $1,000 of assessed property valuation that they did last year.
Trustee Vincent Buono, who chairs the board’s finance committee, said of the budget, “we worked hard to keep the budget in line and next year we will be in good shape as well.”
This year’s budget includes the last payment ($204,000) to the town for guaranteed 24-hour coverage by a dedicated officer as part of the police department merger. Next year’s budget will be that much leaner.
Murphy pointed out that in the last three years, the budget has had a zero percent increase, a 21 percent decrease, and a zero percent increase. “So we are doing our best here.”
Only one person spoke at the public hearing. Sue Anderson wondered why water rates would be increasing on June 1. Rates for village and most town users will increase from $3.35 per 1,000 gallons to $3.85. Another group, town residents who are billed by the village, will see an increase of $5.53 per 1,000 gallons to $6.36.
“This is the first time in six years that we have raised water rates,” said Mayor William Murphy.
The rate hike, he explained, is due to a decrease in revenue from water usage. Not only are users conserving and using less water, but over the course of the last year, the village water department has repaired leaky water lines, especially one large leak in the Glasco line.