The Garden City Board of Trustees adopted a $65.056 million Operating Budget and $9.3 million Five-Year Capital Plan during a special meeting on Thursday, April 29.
The 2021-22 expense appropriations total $65.056 million, which will be funded via three sources—$2 million in current year surplus, estimated revenues of $9.7 million and a tax levy of $53.3 million. The budget is again tax cap compliant, with a 1.95 percent Tax Levy increase, which is less than the increase allowed per the Tax Levy Limit Law, which is approximately 2.4 percent this year.
“Over the last six years, the village has made a concerted effort to raise taxes way below that allowed by the law. This year continues that trend,” Village Treasurer Irene Woo said.
Three budget work sessions took place in March, two of which were held following the March 16 village election. A budget hearing was held on April 5 and continued on April 22, giving the newly elected trustees time to further review the proposed budget and make minor changes, which were presented at a special meeting on Thursday, April 29.
The original capital budget plan included a total of $12.6 million in capital projects. The board, however, reduced the proposed Edgemere Firehouse project by $4 million. Road paving and repairs, which totaled $868,000 in the proposed budget, increased by $831,000 to now total $1.7 million. After those changes, the capital budget plan now totals $9.3 million; funding from taxes remains the same at $4,483,000 million while the amount to be bonded has been reduced from $8.068 million to $4.825 million.
A project not originally included in the tentative budget, but presented by the police commissioner during his department work session on March 24 is $200,000 funding earmarked to purchase police body cameras in the 2022-23 fiscal year. Abatement of St. Paul’s has been approved in this year’s capital plan although a bond resolution has not yet been authorized. That project is anticipated to begin once building stabilization is completed. That project, along with a couple of projects that were deferred by the board—Village Hall Repointing and Replacement of the Village Hall HVAC system, are anticipated to begin during the 2021-22 fiscal year.
Woo thanked Mayor Cosmo Veneziale and village trustees for their thoroughness in reviewing this budget.
“From all the public budget work sessions to all the hours I have spent answering questions over the last few weeks with every single one of you, it’s a large time commitment on your end in gaining an understanding of the budget and the process and I appreciate that,” she said.
—Submitted by the Village of Garden City