If the Village of East Rockaway’s proposed budget passes as presented to the board of trustees on April 8, it would pierce the state’s 2 percent tax levy cap.
Under the budget proposal, the village’s tax levy — or the amount of revenue it would collect from taxes — would increase $581,175.97, or 7.85 percent. As a result, a resident would pay $30.50 for each $100 of their property’s assessed value.
According to Village Clerk Patty Renner, the village board needed to pierce the tax levy limit to fund “expenditures outside of our control,” including the increasing costs of health insurance and liability insurance, increases to hydrant rentals and the state’s mandate to provide monetary assistance to every volunteer firefighter who is diagnosed with cancer.
“The board has no other option but to pierce the tax cap,” Renner said.
The increase would fund the village’s proposed $10.6 million budget, which would be about $315,565, or 3 percent, higher than the current budget. It would fund vehicle maintenance for the Building Department’s aging fleet and the replacement of light poles that have been hit by trucks.
Renner said insurance does not cover the cost of light pole replacements if a driver runs away from the scene, which she said has happened three times this year. One light pole costs about $3,250 to replace, she noted.
The budget may change before the village board votes to adopt it on April 22.