Tarrytown Village Administrator Michael Blau says that everything is on the table when it comes to crafting the 2013-2014 budget. “We’re going to be looking at everything,” he says. “We’re going to be looking at our fee structure to make sure that it is in line with other people’s.
I know from the get-go that the 2% tax levy increase won’t even cover our pension costs. We also know that with tax certs, our tax assessments are going down for the upcoming year. Everything looks as if we’re going to be dealing with the same issues we dealt with last year. Our revenues will probably remain static, our costs are going up well beyond the 2%, so we’re going to have to look at everything, including our staffing levels.”
That said, Blau is adamant that his initial budget will come under the tax levy cap, just as he did last year. “I will do the same this year so the Board knows that in order to comply with the law, this is the impact and this is how you get there.” It will then be up to the Village Board to decide if the staying under the cap is worth the cuts in staffing and services that are likely to be required.
The enforced austerity means there is little in the way of new capital expenditures coming to Tarrytown any time soon. “The only thing we’re buying this year… is a new street sweeper. That’s it,” says Blau. Yet for all the financial hardships facing the Village, Blau is optimistic.
“The light at the end of the tunnel is that we have seen development here,” he says. “Hudson Harbor is building. The Planning Board approved a subdivision a number of months ago called Greystone. Toll Brothers are building. People are interested in building in Tarrytown.”