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County proposes shifting charges

Under the old plan Colonie was slated to pay $289,734 more than the city of Albany, the second-largest contributor in the county's plan.

Initially having to cough up more than $680,000 to meet the county charge-back, town officials established the Albany County Voter Tax in their 2007 preliminary budget.

The new town tax is to account for a $24 per year tax increase for homes assessed at $200,000 under the current charge back.

If Breslin's proposal succeeds, Colonie taxpayers would be paying about $8 per year on a home assessed at $200,000, said Brizzell.

Municipal leaders put the pressure on county leaders in early September to find another way to cover the costs rather than hit communities with tax increases.

After that meeting, representatives from local towns and cities met to discuss their options as they prepared to challenge the charge backs.

In a letter from Cohoes Mayor John T. McDonald to Breslin, McDonald outlined the com-munity leaders' willingness to pay the cost of Election Day inspect-ors, currently budgeted at $495,300 in the County Board of Elections proposed 2007 budget.

To better the county's position Breslin jostled for an additional $120,000.

To comply with HAVA, the county will have to add staff and resources to successfully meet Election Day demands throughout the county.

However, Brizzell is questioning why the county has proposed expenses so much more than what Colonie budgets every year for Election Day costs, she said. The town typically budgets $90,000 each year to cover those cost. Even under Breslin's new plan, the town would still be paying more than $221,000 to effectively do nothing on its part.

Attempts to reach Breslin were unsuccessful.""

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