Published On: Wed, Jan 2nd, 2019

Hey…how is everyone liking that 3.7% tax rate increase…

...that you didn't get because the increase is really 6.8% just as I reported at budget time!

The Village of New York Mills received a 6.8% for General Wholetown; they don't pay police.

The Village of New Hartford and the Town Outside the Villages (TOV) received a 6.8% overall increase in their T-GEN & POLICE P-TWN (6.8% for Police and 6.8% increase for General Wholetown.

And all you sewer users (you know who you are!) how about that Sewer District unit charge?

In 2018 the town board budgeted the unit charge total expense of $127,803 which according to the 2018 budget came to $20 per unit.

For the 2019 budget, the unit charge total expense to be collected is $128,078 or a $275 total increased expenses budgeted for the unit charges in 2019.

As detailed in a September 21 2018 Observer Dispatch article, roughly 191 users were added to the sewer district this past year to account for people in the district who were never previously billed for sewer maintenance charges because the assessment database was never updated under past administrations.

At this point, I believe there were approximately 250 "new" (previously unidentified) units added to pay the 2019 sewer unit charge, but we are still being charged the same $20 per unit that we have been paying all along. How does that math work? Shouldn't the sewer unit charge have gone down to reflect since more people are now paying and the 2019 budgeted expense increase only amounted to $275?

And don't get me started on the fact that the town has no authorization to charge anyone a sewer unit charge because they never adopted a local law justifying the charges. It's called a Sewer Rent Law.

Don't get me wrong, we are not talking about a lot of money for the average New Hartford taxpayer...we will all survive. It is the fact that we have a supervisor who was actually elected as the Chief Financial Officer (not a Parks Director) of the town plus a Finance Director who is also a CPA and they obviously are lacking math skills or maybe they just don't understand town finance and governance.

Either way, everyone loses!  Cheers!