Press-Republican

Local News

January 20, 2013

Taxable value down in Elizabethtown

(Continued)

The town had to pay a mandated 2 percent increase in State Retirement Fund contributions for its employees and an 11.8 percent increase in cost of health insurance.

Both of those expenses are beyond the control of the Town Council, Bartley said.

SALARIES

The salaries of elected officials have not been raised since 2009.

This year’s budget includes a $6,000 pay cut for the town supervisor. All Town Council members’ salaries remain the same as they have been since 2009, as did the town clerk’s salary.

The town’s justices, the highway superintendent and the hourly workers received a 2 percent salary increase.

CUTS MADE

“Our board members ... met three times and examined every line of the budget, looking for places to cut spending,” the supervisor said. “We were successful in reducing but not eliminating a number of items, and saved $38,475 over last year.

Cuts were made in funding several of the organizations that the town supports, including: $1,000 less for the library; $2,000, ambulance; $6,000, code enforcement; $5,000, unemployment insurance; and $6,000, golf-course equipment.

“More importantly, the board looked at ways to increase revenues, such as the possibility of a forest management plan for town-owned land,” Bartley said.

“The town board welcomes suggestions and ideas from residents on how to reduce spending in the coming year.”

Former Town Council member Ken Fenimore wrote several letters to the Press-Republican contesting budget figures and saying that the town stifled comment at public meetings.

Bartley has said in response that budget hearings not the proper place for long debates with citizens and that she will meet with anyone who has questions.

Email Alvin Reiner:

rondackrambler@yahoo.com

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