FALCONER - Residents of the town of Ellicott can expect the tax levy to increase if no changes to the preliminary budget are made.
Cecil Miller, town of Ellicott supervisor, released the preliminary 2013 budget for the town. He said due to issues such as changes made to worker's compensation, he was forced to spend more time on this preliminary budget than any other in the past.
"The amount to be raised by taxes has increased to $2,265,547," he said. "Last year it was $1,862,285, so that's an increase in over $400,000."
Additionally, the preliminary budget shows an increase in the tax rate for residents of the town of Ellicott. If the budget is not modified, residents of Falconer and Celoron will see their tax rates increase from $3.81 per $1,000 of assessed value in 2012 to $4.38 in 2013. Town of Ellicott residents who live outside of Falconer and Celoron can expect their tax rate to increase from $3.93 in 2012 to $4.87 in 2013.
Miller went on to list some of the biggest reasons that the town of Ellicott will need to raise an additional $400,000 more through taxes this year than they were forced to raise last year. Some of those reasons were:
Fines in 2012 were down $20,000 from 2011 and were below $100,000, which Miller called "unbelievable." According to Miller, revenue created by fines was more than $200,000 in 2007.
Revenue created through sales tax was down $26,000 in 2012.
Expenses caused by retirement was up $108,000.
The expense caused by repairing the roof for the Ellicott municipal building will cost an additional $28,000 in 2013.
The mandatory radio upgrade required by the Ellicott Police Department will cost an additional $54,000 in 2013.
Debt service has increased by $34,000.
The cost for worker's compensation, which previously was not part of the town tax rate, is an additional $118,000 in 2013.
"We have a lot of work to do," said Miller. "The ($400,000) we need is obviously not even close to the 2 percent cap, so we need to decide what to do."
Miller went on to propose that the town board set a public hearing to pass a resolution to go over the 2 percent property tax cap.
"I will make a motion to do this," said Lucian Lodestro, board member, "not to say that we will go over the 2 percent cap, but to say that if it is necessary, it is something we can do."
The town board unanimously passed the motion and set the public hearing for 7 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 15, in the Ellicott municipal building.
Additionally, the town board approved a set of four-way stop signs to be installed at the conjunction of Yolande Avenue and Columbia Avenue.