Brian Pugh: Dollars & Sense Re: The Village Budget

To The Editor:

At a work session earlier this month, Mayor Dr. Greg Schmdit said the Village’s financial condition was strong. This recognition of fiscal reality is a welcome relief from the financial fear-mongering more common among the Croton United party’s ranks.

The truth is that the Village’s bond rating has remained strong and the fund balance has steadily grown. In addition, the Village has received clean audits from our own outside auditor and the New York State Comptroller.

All this was achieved while completing historic infrastructure improvements and passing back-to-back “tax freeze” budgets–securing NYS property tax freeze credit that reimburses qualifying New York State homeowners for increases in local property taxes. In fact, this year’s “tax freeze” budget was made possible by the fiscal responsibility of last year’s Democratic Village Board–which budgeted less than what was allowed under the tax cap, thus leaving that difference as a carryover for this year’s budget.

Taxes are best controlled by creative–but careful–policies regarding the expenditure and revenue sides of the ledger.

As your Village Trustee, I will support continuing to explore shared services as outlined in our 2015 Government Efficiency Plan. I also believe in diversifying our tax base by encouraging mixed-use development embodied by the new reconstruction of the former Nappy’s site. By promoting new investment in our community, newer developments can share the tax burden and help take it off the shoulders of homeowners.

Sincerely,

Brian Pugh

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