The Greenburgh Town Council made numerous changes to the 2007 tentative budget resulting in added services and a decrease in the tax rate, both over last year’s rate and over the Supervisor’s proposal.
The townwide budget (A fund) will have an overall decrease of 10.11 percent and a 0.91 percent decrease from the tentative proposal. That amount equates to an overall decrease of almost $0.70 from last year and over a 10 times greater savings over the Supervisor’s proposal. The tax rate for the A fund will be $6.18 per $1,000 of assessed value. On a $15,000 assessment the tax rate would be $92.76.
The tentative budget called for a tax increase for unincorporated residents of 1.01 percent. The Town Council’s adjustments mean that instead of facing an increase, taxes will now decrease by $0.46 per $1,000 of assessed value over last year’s rate, and by $1.67 from the Supervisor’s proposed budget. The tax rate for unincorporated residents will be $119.48 per $1,000 of assessed value.
“Cutting taxes was a priority,” Councilman Steve Basssaid. “That we were able to enhance services and still lower taxes is a terrific accomplishment.”
The Town Council was able to save the taxpayers substantial money while still accomplishing the following goals:
· Added a new police officer requested by the Chief of Police, but cut from the tentative budget.
· Increased the amount of funding for the comprehensive plan from $50,000 to $200,000. The plan, which will take several years to complete, would replace guidelines put into place nearly 30 years ago and when completed will provide a roadmap for the Town in planning for the future.
· Fully accounted for the income from the WestHELP property in two ways. The Town Council’s changes reflect all $1.2 million in rent received from WestchesterCounty. The tentative budget only recognized $372,000. The other change was to account for that revenue in the A fund. The tentative budget had put that amount in the B fund (unincorporated Greenburgh).
“We felt it was imperative to add the additional police officer back into the budget,” Councilwoman Eddie Mae Barnes said. “Crime is declining and we need to continue that trend and adding this officer is a public safety initiative which will help accomplish that goal.”
This budget is still a work in progress and the Town Council looks forward to input from the community at the upcoming public hearings.