Press-Republican

Local News

March 6, 2013

Keeseville dissolution called complicated

KEESEVILLE — Two members of the Keeseville Village Joint Dissolution Study Committee feel nothing should deter the municipality from dissolving as planned on Dec. 31, 2014.

Residents voted in January to dissolve the village, but a dissolution plan that must be approved by the Village Board would also be subject to a referendum, if residents petition for one.

Study Committee members Linda Liberty-Guimond and Leon “Butch” Clodgo recently shared their feelings about the dissolution process with the Press-Republican.

If any referendum on the plan were to fail, dissolution would not take place, and Liberty-Guimond said she’s hoping that reprieve does not happen.

‘EVERYONE SAVES’

“Every homeowner, no matter what their assessment, is going to save money,” she said in an interview.

She said the dissolution plan drafted by the Study Committee and a private consultant does show that for those under a certain level of assessment, special-district fees could be higher than village taxes were.

But that’s a small segment of Keeseville’s homeowners, she insists.

In Chesterfield, 35 percent of village homeowners have assessments of $50,000 or less, while in AuSable, it’s 31 percent in that category, according to each county’s real-property offices.

There are 425 residential parcels on the AuSable side and 409 on the Chesterfield side.

ASSESSMENT LEVEL

“There might need to be a few things that need to be clarified,” Liberty-Guimond said. “They originally came up with $70,000” as the assessment level below which there is no savings from dissolution.

“But on the final form, they consolidated these items. It was $60,000 in the final report.”

That would mean that people with an assessment of $60,000 or less could pay more in new fees and taxes than previously in village taxes — but only if special districts for water, sewer, sidewalks, village debt, street-lighting and other services were formedww.

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