Town keeps tight rein on budget

After completing a series of workshops, the town of Clifton Park has established a preliminary budget for 2007 and set a date for the public hearing in which residents will be able to provide comment and feedback to the town board before they make a final vote on the budget.

Clifton Park will not have a town tax in 2007, said Supervisor Phil Barrett.

Property owners will continue to pay a highway tax of 16 cents per $1,000 of assessed value. The preliminary budget calls for the town to spend $3,627,179 to maintain that rate.

The preliminary budget also calls for 2 percent of the $14 million budget to be spent paying down debt.

Like other communities, Clifton Park continues to see a sharp increase in the area of employee benefits. This budget line item for 2007 will be an increase of 18 percent from last year and includes the costs of health benefits, workers' compensation and state retirement system contributions. Benefits alone are listed in the preliminary budget as costing the town $1,957,178.

"The 2007 preliminary budget for the town of Clifton Park is fiscally conservative, assures no town tax for 2007 and includes a continuing commitment to reduce the highway tax," Barrett said. "We will continue to remain focused on proper budgetary priorities and relentlessly study options to be more efficient and save money. This focus has resulted in Clifton Park experiencing unprecedented fiscal success in recent years and will ensure positive news for taxpayers in the future."

The 2007 preliminary budget is available for review at the office of the town clerk. Residents wishing to ask questions or offer comment on the proposed budget may do so at a public hearing scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 9, in the Wood Room at town hall. ""

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