2016-03-10 / Front Page

Babylon Village offers new spending proposal for 2016-17

New budget maintains tax rate at same level for third year in a row

The Babylon Village Board’s 2016-17 budget calls for less in spending than in the current year, and is within the New York State Tax cap, according to details released by the Village this week. And, it maintains the level of all services, according to Mayor Ralph Scordino.

“This is a tight budget that meets the cap and keeps spending at a minimum,” he said.

Under the proposed budget, which is subject to change before it is voted on in late April, the tax levy, that portion of the budget funded through real property taxes, gives from $6.159 million to $6.24 million, an increase of approximately $81,000. But since the Village’s assessments have risen from $41.25 million to $41.795 million, the Village is able to maintain the tax rate at $14.93, the level at which it has been for the past three years. That means that residents living in a home assessed at $4,500 will continue to pay approximately $675 a year for Village taxes.

 What is not in the budget is additional money for major capital improvements such as roadwork. Federal and state highway funding for these projects has dwindled over the past several years and the Village has not had a capital improvement bond since 2005 when it borrowed approximately $7 million and repaved or restored almost three quarters of the Village’s roads. Unlike school districts, which have their bonding exempted for the tax cap, Villages have to include those costs in their calculations for the cap, something that Scordino said is inequitable and that Village officials from across the state are lobbying to change.

“Getting that changed would help us 100 percent and enable us to do some of these important projects,” said Scordino.

The Village must finalize and vote on the budget by the end of April.   

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