Board OKs tax increase

Residents in Glenville with homes assessed at $173,000, the town average, can expect to see a tax increase of about $35, and Scotia homeowners who pay Glenville taxes will see average decreases of about $17 under a budget passed, 3-to-2, at the Wednesday, Nov. 14, town board meeting.

Town Supervisor Frank Quinn called the passage of the 6.1 percent tax increase baffling, saying the board had been working to keep the increase under 3 percent. He said the board regularly agreed on all areas of the budget, right up until the meeting.

Quinn said the only reason he voted in favor of the increase is to avoid an even higher amount.

Months ago, Quinn proposed a 15 percent tax increase as a way to get the board working to explore ways to cut costs as well as a means of getting the community involved in the process.

"I did all I could to keep it under 3 percent. If I didn't approve the 6 percent, it would have in effect been me saying I supported the 15 percent," said Quinn.

Board members Valerie DiGiandomenico and Mark Quinn, who was recently re-elected to the board, voted against the increase.

Supervisor Quinn also proposed an amendment to again reduce overtime for all town departments, including police. This is the second time the village has looked at reducing overtime hours as a way to save money. The overtime decrease of $84,000 allowed the board to decrease the tax rate.

There have been several discrepancies is the town's fund balance, which is said to be between $850,000 and $900,000.

Board member Mark Quinn said he had hoped to avoid cutting overtime by borrowing form the fund balance. He is also a proponent of maximizing the town's commercial real estate opportunities as a way to keep taxes down. While he supports preserving natural areas, Quinn said he feels that improving commercial real estate along areas of the Freemans Bridge Corridor is a way to keep costs down without having to make choices about layoffs for town employees.

"We have a lot of opportunities in Glenville, ways to create jobs, improve business and maintain a fair tax rate," said Quinn.""

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