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Money meetings detail Colonie's deficit

Next, the slides discussed the supervisor's 10-year plan to eliminate the deficit. As a short-term plan, the supervisor re-introduced her highly publicized one-time corrective tax, which would charge residents a one-time fee that would go toward paying off the deficit.

Last month, the supervisor and Town Board sent a home-rule message to the state Legislature urging lawmakers to pass a bill that would put the one-time corrective tax law last month into place. The Legislative session came to a close with no action taken on the bill in the Senate after passing in the Assembly.

The tax, Mahan said, will average about $156 per residential parcel, with 90 percent of residential parcel owners paying less than $250. Commercial parcel owners would pay an average of $550, and all of the money is expected to generate $7 million. Another short-term action is the sale of the town's portion of Heritage Park, of which will bring in $2.7 million. More property sales were included in the plan, including the Newtonville Post Office, Stony Creek Reservoir and the Colonie Community Center at 1653 Central Ave.

The supervisor's plans also include the continuation of a freeze on all non-essential spending, EMS billing write-offs, the reduction of seasonal hiring and evaluating existing rental or service agreements.

In the long term, the supervisor's plan includes the evaluation of advantages of consolidating town departments, generating more property sales, establishing effective internal controls for cash disbursement and more.

Resident Peter Crouse, of Loudonville, said that while the information that was put out to the public was good, he "didn't think that the format was conducive to a free-flowing of issues." He did say that the information was helpful, and stimulated the public to ask questions.

"Hopefully, as a result, the supervisor and her team will change the format [of the meetings,]" he said.

Crouse said he plans to attend more of the financial informational meetings. There are five meetings left: July 31 at 7 p.m., Public Operations Building, 347 Old Niskayuna Road; Aug. 8, noon, Village of Colonie Recreation Center Gym, 1 Thunder Road; Aug. 19, 7 p.m., Crossings Meetings Room, 580 Albany-Shaker Road; Aug. 20, 7 p.m., Menands Fire House, 250 Broadway; and Sept. 3, 7 p.m. Standford Heights Fire Department, Station 1, 2240 Central Ave.""

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