The Town of Crown Point's draft budget for 2012 rolls in under the state's 2-percent tax cap.
The budget has a tax levy of $980,270, which is 5.7 percent under the $1.04 million collected this year.
Crown Point Town Supervisor Bethany Kosmider said they shaved about $60,000 off last year's budget.
"I looked at the budget line item by line item. Some items were inflated. Building and grounds was budgeted at $45,000, and we hadn't used that."
She said the Town Council voted to eliminate the elected Board of Assessors and go to an appointed sole assessor, a move that has generated a lot of controversy but saved money.
The Board of Assessors was budgeted at about $39,000, including salaries, benefits and supplies, but the sole assessor is down for $18,000 for next year. Kosmider said they have two applicants to interview.
"We wanted to stay under that 2-percent cap," she said of the budget. "Keeping the numbers under the tax cap is challenging. I know we will be under the tax cap and perhaps a little less than last year."
SPECIAL MEETING TUESDAY
The budget includes 2-percent raises for town employees and elected officials, but that may change before a final budget is adopted, she said.
"They (Town Council) may say no to raises."
Health insurance was up 13 percent, Kosmider said, but that had been anticipated.
"Medical insurance is in the budget for $20,000 less because it was over-budgeted before. There were expenses in the budget that we never used, but they all add up after a time."
The full budget totals $1.7 million, about the same as last year.
"I do feel pretty good about this budget," Kosmider said. "We saved a lot of money."
She and the Town Council are still working on the budget, Kosmider said, although no major changes are planned.
The council is holding a special meeting at 10 a.m. this coming Tuesday at the Town Hall to approve the tentative budget and officially set the hearing date.
The public hearing for the budget will be at 5:45 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 10, at Crown Point's Knapp Senior Center.
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