The Camillus Town Board unanimously approved its 2008 budget last Tuesday. The town general expenses increased 2% for a total of $175,000 because the board estimated too much revenue for the landfill, and fine money was also down about $100,000.
"I think this years budget is an excellent budget considering we had many obstacles to deal with," said Town Supervisor Mary Ann Coogan.
In going through the budget the board held the line and there will be no new hires through 2009. Also, $158,000 in unanticipated revenue and $100,000 in reserve was used to bring down the budget. The total increase in taxes is about 2.2 percent, or approximately $15 per $100,000.
"As we move forward, there's always a concern for property tax," said board member James Salanger. "I think it's incumbent upon us to start pressuring the state of New York to break the gridlock and start addressing the property tax issue."
Town board member Diane Dwire agreed.
"I think one of the things on a local level we've done is encourage economic development," Dwire said. "We certainly have exciting projects going and have seen a lot of growth in the last two or three years, and this is one of the ways to maintain our tax rate at minimum increases."
Third ward councilor William Davern credited the freeze on hiring for new positions as a factor in the budget.
"I was pleased that the board agreed the hiring freeze for two additional years," Davern said. "That's very important to all of us, that we're trying to control any increase in expenses."
[In other news:]
- The board approved the installation of one proposed fire hydrant in the existing Hinsdale Road Water Supply District.
- The board unanimously accepted a purchase offer from Mr. Jeff Oot in the amount of $260 for an abandoned section of Marion Ave. that is approximately 50 by 65 feet near 3405 Milton Ave.
- The board set Nov. 27 at 11 a.m. at the Camillus Municipal Building to open sealed bids for the construction of the Camillus Consolidated Water Department