Express News Staff
LONG LAKE -- The Long Lake Town Board held two public hearings when it met Wednesday, Nov. 13.
The first was on a local law to override the 1.66 percent cap on next year’s tax levy. The override passed unanimously.
The second was on the 2014 town budget, which exceeds the tax levy cap by $66,198. It also passed unanimously.
When Mike Romanych asked Supervisor Clark Seaman what caused the cap on the tax levy to be exceeded, Seaman offered the following points.
The leak on the holding tank for the bathrooms at the town beach resulted in the town having the tank pumped out every week this past summer at a cost of $22,000. “We were pumping over 4,000 gallons every week this past summer,” Seaman said.
Seaman also pointed to $10,000 added to the budget for the water district to purchase materials, $10,000 added to repair the Viet Nam Memorial at Mt. Sabattis, $10,000 added to repair the cable to the communications tower on Mt. Sabattis and $11,000 for health insurance for the newly elected town board member.
“Add these up and that just about covers the $66,000 [increase in taxes],” Seaman said. “If we were to cut below the cap, where would we cut? This is little more than a maintenance budget.”
Most wages and salaries are flat. Those that have gone up increased by 1.6 percent. Also, the board budgeted more for fuel and heating oil.
The budget for 2014 shows appropriations of $4,341,179, up $156,739 or 3.7 percent from 2013.
Estimated revenues are $413,000, up $21,120 or 5.4 percent from 2013.
Fund balance applied to reduce taxes is the same at $150,000.
The total tax levy for 2014 is $3,778,179, up $159,445 or 4.4 percent from this year.
The cap would have allowed a tax levy of $3,232,545 because the fire districts are excluded from the cap. Excluding fire districts puts the levy at $3,298,741 and over the limit by $66,196, which required the override as provided by law.
All tax rates are going up, but a large part of the increase is due to a revaluation that has lowered total overall taxable assessments in the town. The tax rate per $100,000 of assessed value compares 2014 to 2013 as follows.
Townwide General $240.93, up from $215.15.
Townwide Highway $84.61, up from $77.07.
Long Lake Fire District $63.96, up from $54.73.
Raquette Lake Fire District $24.83, up from $22.68.
Long Lake Water District $93.73, up from $73.74.
The Town Board next meets Wednesday, Nov. 27, starting at 7:30 p.m. in Town Hall.
THE GENERAL FUND shows appropriations of $2,567,761, estimated revenues of $282,900 and appropriated fund balance of $120,000, leaving $2,164,861 to be raised by taxes.
THE HIGHWAY FUND shows appropriations of $787,555, estimated revenues of $7,300 and appropriated fund balance of $20,000, leaving $760,255 to be raised by taxes.
LONG LAKE FIRE DISTRICT shows $406,500 to be raised by taxes.
RAQUETTE LAKE FIRE DISTRICT shows $72,938 to be raised by taxes.
LONG LAKE WATER DISTRICT shows $409,735 in appropriations and estimated revenues of $112,650, leaving $297,085 to be raised by taxes.
RAQUETTE LAKE WATER DISTRICT shows $96,690 in appropriations, estimated revenues of $10,150 and appropriated fund balance of $10,000, leaving $76,540 to be raised by taxes.