Finance Commissioner Matthew McCabe made no changes to the budget that was defeated only days ago when he brought to the Tuesday, Nov. 20 meeting.
The one thing that did change, however, was this time he had the votes to pass it.
The Saratoga Springs City Council, by a margin of 3-2, passed the 2008 budget. Commissioner of Accounts John Franck and Commissioner of Public Works Thomas McTygue cast the dissenting votes.
At the heart of the budget controversy was $8 million set aside for a new public safety facility in the capital programs budget.
Public Safety Commissioner Ron Kim and members of the capital budget program committee felt the amount, which is $4 million less than any proposed facility Kim has brought before the board, was a slap in the face of the work they had dome over the past two years.
Tuesday night, Kim reversed his stance on the budget from only five days ago, saying he would rather have the $8 million than no money at all.
City taxpayers face an average tax increase of 8.64 percent or $5.36 per $1,000 of assessed value. If a budgeted $8 million for a public safety facility does not go through, the tax rate would drop to an average of 5.25 percent or $5.19 per $1,000 of assessed value, according to the city Finance Department. The tax rate for 2007 was $4.94 per $1,000 of assessed value.
See the Nov. 29 print edition of the Saratoga Spotlight for more on this story."