Menands, village of Colonie and town of Colonie discuss possible overpayment for services

Village of Colonie Mayor Frank Leak said, "There's really no answers. It was just a matter of discussion. Putting everything out on the table."

Mahan said one of the reasons the town tax rate village residents are paying is possibly higher than the rate town residents are paying is because of a highway tax rate added by the previous administration in 2006.

But according to Conners, "Why this has happened is something that nobody can explain easily."

He said the suspected inequity was discovered by Mayor Coates when he took office in April 2007.

One possible remedy is to pay village residents back the excess money they believe they have been paying since 2006. Another is to reduce the amount they pay when town officials create the 2009 budget.

Conners said, given the financial situation of the town, with its $18 million deficit, village residents will most likely not receive a check in the mail any time soon, but that the 2009 budget could reflect the subtraction of several of these services that the villages do not feel that they should have to pay for.

When asked if she projects that 2009 taxes will be lower than previous years for village residents, Mahan said, "There's no way to know right now. We're short on time at this point."

Conners said town officials will put together the budget in October and November and discussions between the villages and the town will continue.

"What we've decided is to meet periodically," Mahan said. "We really opened up the dialogue."

Mayor Leak said all of the officials are working together to achieve the same objective.

"We're just concerned that the villages be treated fairly," he said.

Conners said he is confident the officials will be able to come to an agreement on the matter.

"I'm fairly certain that this will be worked out, the numbers at least, over the next six weeks or sooner," he said.""

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