$11.26 mil­lion bud­get faces re­view

Pro­posed spend­ing plan would boost prop­erty tax levy by 0.93 per­cent

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - FRONT PAGE - By Wil­liam J. Kem­ble news@free­manon­line.com

TOWN OF UL­STER >> Town Board mem­bers will re­view a pro­posed $11.26 mil­lion 2017 mu­nic­i­pal bud­get that would in­crease spend­ing by 0.57 per­cent and the town-wide prop­erty tax levy by 0.93 per­cent.

The spend­ing plan is ex­pected to be dis­cussed dur­ing a meet­ing 7 p.m. Thurs­day at Town Hall on Town Hall Drive.

Un­der the bud­get, the $8.42 mil­lion town-wide prop­erty tax levy would in­crease by $77,451.

Su­per­vi­sor James Quigley said the to­tal prop­erty tax levy, which in­cludes spe­cial dis­tricts for which not all prop­erty owners are taxed, would be un­der the 0.68 per­cent state limit on in­creases.

“We’re within the tax cap and the bud­get pre­serves the ser­vices that are pro­vided by the town in 2016 into 2017,” he said. “This bud­get has a 0.59 (per­cent) tax levy in­crease.”

Quigley said he does not ex­pect to adopt a res­o­lu­tion that would al­low the board to over­ride the state levy limit.

“The town has been able to ab­sorb the fi­nan­cial shocks from the TechCity re­assess­ment,” Quigley said.

TechCity, which com­prises the former IBM in­dus­trial com­plex, in April won an ap­peal of the tax as­sess­ment on 22 of the prop­er­ties, with the court set­ting val­ues at $27.97 mil­lion for a 36.29 per­cent de­crease of $15.93 mil­lion.

Be­cause prop­erty tax as­sess­ments in the rest of the town in­creased, the town’s tax roll de­creased in value by only $6.85 mil­lion, or 0.67 per­cent, to $1.02 bil­lion.

Mu­nic­i­pal salaries un­der the bud­get would be un­changed for su­per­vi­sor at $44,000 and for Town Board mem­bers at $10,000 each. The salary of the high­way su­per­in­ten­dent would in­crease 2 per­cent to $63,673 and the salary for the clerk like­wise would rise 2 per­cent to $50,938, while the town

jus­tices would re­ceived 1.96 per­cent in­creases to $42,448 each.

Quigley said the bud­get in­cludes funds for ad­di­tional le­gal chal­lenges to prop­erty tax as­sess­ments.

“You will find a $50,000 in­crease in the le­gal ex­pense line item in the as­ses­sor’s of­fice for fight­ing these tax lit­i­ga­tions,” he said. “Then, there are pro­vi­sions in the (spe­cial) dis­tricts for judg­ments and claims.”

Quigley said a bud­get pub­lic hear­ing is ex­pected to be set for the Oct. 20 board meet­ing.

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