Hearing held about proposed Queenstown FY 2018 budget
QUEENSTOWN — Queenstown Commissioners have proposed a budget of $629,434 for fiscal 2018, an increase of just over $41,000 from 2017. The proposed budget, Ordinance 17-03, establishes a tax rate of .17773 per $100 of assessed real property value and a tax rate of .44 per $100 on all commercial or business personal property. No residents spoke at the public hearing May 24.
The real property tax is down for FY18 slightly from this year’s rate of .1810.
The largest increases in the general fund budget over last year were added expense to legal counsel and the town planner’s services.
The Public Utilities Commission also proposed adopting an enterprise budget for the town’s water and sewer operations. The water/ sewer fund budget also showed an increase at just over $52,000 dollars from last year.
Increases to the water/sewer fund were largely due to increased facilities and equipment costs, such as electric service and repairs and maintenance costs associated with maintaining water/sewer lines.
The budget ordinance is available for review through the town office and on the town website. Queenstown residents may call or comment in writing to the town office before the next meeting of the commissioners June 14 at 4 p.m. whereby the ordinance will be called to vote.
In other business, resolution number 17–102, a resolution of the commissioners to establish a disconnection policy for delinquent water and sewer accounts was accepted unanimously. That resolution can be viewed also at the town office and online. The new disconnect policy will consider a bill eligible for disconnect, 10 days after the due date. Per the resolution a disconnect notice will be mailed, or in the case of a rental property, placed on the door of the property in delinquency. The disconnect letter will give the owner/tenant an additional 14 days to have their water/sewer bill paid in full. A disconnect fee of $35 will be assessed, as will a reconnect fee of $35. This resolution is effective Jan. 1, 2018.
The commissioners tabled until the next meeting ordinance 17–05 which will establish/amend the Queenstown town code to add chapter 7 titled “residential rental housing license and inspection” to establish a licensing and inspection program for residential rental dwelling units within the town of Queenstown; and resolution 7–103 to establish a fee schedule for rental licenses.
Public comment was heard by one individual only on this matter, and in favor of passing this resolution expediently. Queenstown resident Mark Mayberry stated that the property adjacent to his had tenants which behaved in an unlawful manner. Because of this, Mayberry stated that he hung a noose from a tree limb to discourage would be trespassers. However, after an anonymous complaint was made to the sheriff’s office about the noose, Mayberry said he did remove it. Mayberry said he hopes the proposed ordinance and resolution would eliminate some of the concerns he has had regarding rental properties.
The commissioners expressed concerns of increased traffic including passers through exceeding the speed limit, and tractor and trailers over the gross vehicle weight, proceeding down streets clearly marked, to a sheriff’s deputy in attendance. The Commissioners requested there be an increased presence from the sheriff’s office within town limits. The town also requested that auxiliary — volunteer — members be used where possible to help deter traffic violations and record the same, but did not suggest the hiring of additional officers by the town for the extra duty.
The next meeting of the commissioners is scheduled for June 14 at 4 p.m. and will be a public hearing on Ordinance No. 17-04, titled: an ordinance of the town of Queenstown to adopt supplemental findings of fact in connection with the application of the growth allocation floating zone to the Waterman property and to reflect that the total acreage of the Waterman property to be reclassified is 59.405 acres, in order to be consistent with the newly adopted Queenstown critical area map.