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Smithfield Town Council: Budget up almost 3 percent

The town of Smithfield adopted its 2009 budget Nov. 10. The spending plan for 2009 includes an increase of 2.78 percent, with the levy rising from $356,113 this year to $365,990 for 2009, an increase of less than $10,000.

Supervisor Richard O. Bargabos said the town will use its share of the sales tax collected by the county in 2009 to offset the town's tax rate. The property tax rate for 2008 is $6.43 compared to $6.51 next year, an increase of 1.30 percent.

According to Bargabos, sales tax revenue projects are down about .60 percent from $76,639 this year to $76,180 for the coming year.

Property owners can expect to pay $6.51 per $1,000 of assessed value this year, up from $6.43 for 2008. Taxes on a $100,000 home would be $651 annually.

"The increase in the tax levy and expenses is mostly due to higher costs for materials, energy and labor, as well as a decrease in revenue from mortgage taxes and other state aid such as Real Property Tax Assessment maintenance aid," Bargabos said.

According to Bargabos, the Smithfield Fire District tax levy will increase by just less than 25 percent for 2009, rising from $43,070 in 2008 to $53,746 in 2009. The SFD tax rate will increase 21.11 percent -- from 96 cents in 2008 to $1.17 in 2009.

"The town budget officer and town board have no authority over the fire district tax or budget approval process," Bargabos said. "This is decided by the separately elected fire commissioners, and the fire tax is levied with the town and county tax bill."

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