By Mark Reynolds
For the past few weeks, Lloyd town officials worked to reduce their 2021 budget by nearly $1 million, which brought them under the state’s 1.56% tax cap. Previously, a majority of the board voted to stay under the tax cap, forcing them to make sure that next year’s budget came in under it. They are now below the cap by $9,763.
The budget contains $11,406,478 in appropriations that includes the General and Highway expenses as well as water, sewer, lighting, ambulance and fire departments costs.
The town will receive revenues of $3,145,799, which leaves a tax levy of $8,260,679.
Salaries for 2021: Supervisor at $30,000; Councilpersons at $9,469 each; Town Clerk at $50,000; two Town Justices at $31,114 each, Highway Superintendent at $60,700 and Building Department Director at $108,376.
A taxpayer with a home assessed at $250,000 that is outside the water and sewer district will see a town tax bill of $1,417. That same $250,000 home that is inside the water and sewer district will receive a tax bill of $1,945 and taxpayers with the $250,000 assessment who are only inside the water district will pay $1,555 in town taxes.
Councilman Joe Mazzetti said through a lot of hard work and painful decisions made in every department, the budget is now under the tax cap.
“The main thing is we had to do what was right for the entire town. There are things we all wish we could still have but unfortunately we have to make tough decisions,” he said.
Councilwoman Claire Winslow said she understands why the board voted to stay under the tax cap for this budget, especially in light of the pandemic. She urged the board to re-evaluate the possibility of going over the tax cap in the future, “because if we continue to rob Peter to pay Paul the town is eventually going to get a fat tax bill and we don’t want that to happen. So next year I urge everybody on this board to really consider going over [tax cap] because it might be only $25 on a $200,000 home as opposed to $125. We have to really dig deep and take a look at it.”
The Board is expected to approve the final 2021 town budget at their November 18th meeting.
Boring Contract Approved
The board approved a horizontal boring contract with Green Meadows Enterprises for $282,300, which will extend water and sewer to the Bob Shepard Park beside the Hudson River. This includes the installation of a new water and sewer main that will go under the CSX railroad tracks.
The project was reviewed under the provisions of the State Environmental Quality Review Act and received a negative declaration, indicating that the project will not have an adverse impact upon the environment. CPL Architects will oversee and inspect the project to ensure that it is in compliance with the contract documents.
The work is being funded from two grants totaling $375 that were obtained by the late NYS Assemblyman Frank Skartados, specifically for this project.
Lawn Care Contract Accepted
The board approved a contract with Baker & Sons Landscaping that will run through December 31, 2020. The town will pay $300/cut of the Tony Williams Field; $70/cut for the Village Field; $37.50/hr for extra work; $850 per fertilizer application of the Tony Williams Field and $265 per fertilizer application for the Village Field.
Audio Contract Tabled
The board is on the verge of approving a $23,878 contract with Hudson Valley Audio Visual to install new microphones and a sound system for $18,939 as well as a 70 inch interactive display for $4,939 at the town hall meeting room. The board tabled the resolution and will be seeking another demonstration and a guarantee from the company that the new equipment will solve the town’s long-standing audio and video issues at their public meetings. They expect to take the matter up again at the next Town Board meeting.