Nisky’s new fees not set in stone

Board passes budget with 3.4 percent tax hike, new revenues would require future laws

— Exactly how the lawn debris pick up is going to be collected to reach the $150,000 isn’t completely clear. Landry said the fee would be a one-time annual fee. Landry said users of the service would be billed early in the year before service starts in late spring.

When Landry was questioned if the fee would require residents to sign up ahead of time or how the residents would be chosen to pay the fee, he restated it is a user fee and the town is not looking at a registration process.

“We are looking at trying to impose it upon the residents that do use it,” said Landry.

Landry said the average number of stops per week for lawn debris pick up is about 2,600, at which around 3,600 bags and 4,100 cans are picked up.

Landry also said “a large part of this program will still be paid by general taxes.”

McKinney said he didn’t approve of charging a fee for lawn debris pick up and questioned how the increased revenue will be raised.

“They’ve created a big spot in the budget assuming they are going to get $150,000 and at this point and time they have no idea how they are going to implement the program, track it and bill it,” said McKinney. “They are betting a lot of this budget on a lot of unknowns. It would have been nice to have a lot of this worked out before they passed this budget.”

Councilwoman Liz Orzel Kasper also expressed concerns about the fee increases.

“I think that when you put a budget out there with fees that are unknown it is very disheartening,” she said. “I think a lot of citizens … are concerned because they don’t know what it is.”

Kasper asked Landry if the lawn debris pick up fee included the pick up of loose leaves, but Landry said the town is not looking to include that in the fee.

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