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Budget to contain tax rate cut

Taxpayers in the Town of Alden will be able to look forward to a small decrease in their town tax rate, according to preliminary budget discussions held during Monday evening's Town Board meeting.

With the town's general fund appropriations at $1,452,187, which Supervisor Ronald L. Smith said is a little less than a 3 percent decrease from this year, the town tax rate should drop from $2.39 per $1,000 of assessed valuation in 2007 to $2.30 in 2008.

"We have worked hard to try and find ways to save money," Smith said. "Clearly this shows that we have done it." In addition, Smith said a water district bond issue that will be paid off this year reduced the budget by nearly $100,000.

Town Board members will receive a 5 percent pay increase in the next budget, the first since 2005 according to Smith.

Highway employees also will see their salaries increase by 3 percent, according to union contracts.

The town also has budgeted $90,000 for a ten-wheel dump truck at the Highway Department's request. Smith said the increase to the highway fund is less than $3,000, which equals 3 cents per $1,000.

According to the town's fire protection contract, all four fire departments -- Alden, Crittenden, Millgrove and Townline -- will receive 3 percent increases at a total cost of $126,303.

In addition, the Crittenden and Millgrove fire departments will receive a 3 percent increase in their service awards.

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