Should Pleasantville's village board vote to override the 2 percent tax cap by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo last year in the village?
While the is right beneath the state-imposed limit, Village Administrator Patricia Dwyer said last week, "Our treasurer and our village attorney recommend the board consider overriding the tax cap."
Municipalities in New York State are allowed to override the cap with a simple majority by the board, while school districts must put the issue to a vote.
The move, Dwyer explained, would not necessarily mean the village would raise taxes above the limit, but would be "more so for interpretative reasons," and not "for any political purpose or statement."
Trustee Mindy Berard pointed out calculating the tax cap itself involves several steps, calling the process "ridiculous."
"That equation is over two pages and in order to figure out adding in the exclusions associated with growth is really a whole other ordeal," she said. "That was an unbelievable feat to get to this number in order to do this whole budget."
"There are always extraneous things occurring," Dwyer said, citing mandated pension and health care costs and tax certiorari as items that add to the village's expenditures.
Trustee Jonathan Cunningham also said it's also challenging for the village to plan a budget with the Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA) and Police Benevolent Association contracts still unresolved for the coming year.
"We are in negotiations," Dwyer said. "As the board knows, the PBA is working on an expired contract. the CSEA is about to expire on the 31st of May."
Dwyer said the board must vote to override the cap prior to adopting the budget and must take a new vote every fiscal year.
The general fund budget proposal for 2012-13 outlines $13,286,379 in expenditures, with $9,444,930 to be collected in taxes.
"What needs to be understood is the noose gets tighter every year," commented Mayor Peter Scherer.
The budget must be adopted by the village board by May 1.