In line with its recent budgets, the Town of Plattekill adopted a 2022 spending plan that will raise taxes less than 1.0 percent.
The Town Board voted 4-0 to adopt a $6,354,979 budget at a Nov. 3 public hearing that drew no public comment. The total amount to be raised from taxes in 2022 will be $4,196,184, a 0.97 percent increase over the $4,155,717 tax levy in 2021.
Supervisor Joseph Croce, who will leave office at the end of the year after not seeking re-election, said he was satisfied with producing a budget that has an increase of just $40,467 in the amount to be raised by taxes. He said Plattekill hasn’t exceeded the state-mandated 2.0 percent tax cap since it was instituted in 2012.
“I think it’s a very fair budget,” Croce said. “We’ve had zero tax increase in the general fund for the entire time I’ve been Supervisor (he assumed office in 2013).”
Croce explained that there were several factors that have allowed the Town of Plattekill to keep taxes low.
“We have used some of our unallocated fund money,” he said. “But we’ve been able to do that with smart budgeting and being frugal. We’ve also been fortunate recently - with what’s going on in the world – to have had an increase in our sales tax revenue and mortgage tax revenue. That certainly has helped us out.”
Councilmen Darryl Matthews, Dean DePew Sr. and Larry Farrelly all voted to approve the 2022 budget. The board is short one member after the resignation of Michael Putnam last month.
“You’re never happy spending money, especially when it’s other people’s money,” Matthews said. “But we haven’t hurt anybody on taxes. We know people can still stay here. And that’s all I can be happy about. If people weren’t happy, they’d be here.”
DePew said it’s essential that the Town of Plattekill keep the budget under the state-mandated tax cap every year.
“As we travel through the community and you see the people, you see that everybody is hurting,” DePew said. “I don’t care if it’s our community or any other community, I firmly believe that budgeting, watching the taxes, watching the dollar, that’s an every-single-day event. It’s not something we do just this time of the year. We follow it all year long. We’re constantly crunching the numbers trying to make things better. I’m proud to say we didn’t raise the taxes in those years.”
In other news, the board unanimously approved a resolution to oppose having a county-wide landfill in the Town of Plattekill.
Plattekill joins a number of Ulster County towns that have adopted similar resolutions to let the Ulster County Resource Recovery Agency (UCRRA) know that they oppose having county-wide landfills in their towns.
The county currently ships the solid waste it accepts to a landfill west of Syracuse, about 250 miles away. But that site, called Seneca Meadows, is slated to close at the end of 2025.
The UCRRA hired a firm in August to develop a map of potential landfill sites as part of the agency’s long-term solid waste management plan.
“The towns in general I think we were very surprised by this,” Croce said of the UCRRA’s recent actions. “There has been no consultation with the towns. I do believe any town that they’re looking at as a potential site should be included in the discussion and we don’t feel we’ve been included in the discussion to this point.”
Although DePew acknowledged that “nobody wants anything undesirable in their backyard,” he said Plattekill shouldn’t be considered as a potential site by the UCRRA.