$11.26 million budget faces review
Proposed spending plan would boost property tax levy by 0.93 percent
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.