Manlius town budget a work in progress

The preliminary town budget will be available for public review until the next meeting on Nov. 12. There is still discussion between now and the vote for the final budget on Nov. 19.

In other action

Village fire budgets were first presented last April, but the board considered a few changes that had been requested since then. The village of Minoa would like to add $15,400 for a brush truck, which would be in place of whatever larger entire would be used for the same purpose. It could also carry more men to the scene of a fire, councilors said.

The villages of Fayetteville and Manlius are also considering consolidation of the two fire departments, creating a possible commission to represent both areas while easing the struggle somewhat to keep taxes low.

"Hopefully the consolidation of Fayetteville and Manlius will help," Tetley said. "The commission also offers a unique opportunity for town residents to advocate for residents outside the villages. We'll have to make sure we're well represented in the possible commission."

The issue of emergency radios was also an important point in all of the fire budgets, as well as the police department. For example, it would cost $215,000 for Manlius Police Department to purchase and install the radios, in order to have all emergency vehicles on the same frequency and increase communication within the county. However, other villages would have different costs, and each would be responsible for buying its own system.

To equip all of Onondaga County with emergency radios, it would cost $14 million. The County Legislature suggested adding a surcharge for landlines to pay for the system, and the bill was passed by the State Legislature, but Gov. David A. Patterson has not agreed to sign the bill.

"Without a surcharge on landlines, the county won't pick up the cost of the radios," Tetley said. "They must be paid for by the town. It's certainly a sizeable amount that taxpayers would have to come up with."

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