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Most Newfane fees to drop in proposed town budget

NEWFANE -- Residents will see a decrease in most Newfane special district fees, although water and sewage charges go up, in the proposed 2017 budget that the Town Board presents at a public hearing at 6:45 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 16 in Town Hall, 2737 Main St.

The proposed $7,374,301 budget is up $26,999 over the current budget, according to Town Supervisor Tim Horanburg, who said savings in some of the special districts helped offset the slight increase in overall spending. The town does not have a town property tax, but rather has special district taxes.

Horanburg said the largest savings are in refuse collection, where the fee will drop from the current $189 per unit to $160 per unit, due to a new contract with Modern Corp. He said the town realized better rates by joining Cambria, Somerset and Pendleton in the bidding process. The refuse budget is down $62,000 to $694,000 in the proposed budget, also aided by the town’s move to recycling pick-up every two weeks instead of weekly, Horanburg noted.

In addition, lighting district fees are down three cents to 16 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation, for a budget of $76,120, while the fire protection services tax decreases 13 cents to $1.57 per $1,000 of assessed valuation. The fire protection budget is $702,495. The town contracts with three volunteer companies -- Olcott, Newfane and Wright’s Corners.

The base tax rate for water will increase $5 to $30 per home per year, Horanburg said. The water district budget is up $38,873 to $814,187. The sewer district rates increase $5 per household, as well, to $205 per unit, but the majority of the town is on septic systems.

Spending in the highway department will go up $58,072 to $1,654,772 in the proposed budget, Horanburg said, attributing it to a 7 percent increase in health insurance costs and 2 percent hike in wages for town employees.

The general fund spending drops $14,086 to $2,068,599.

In addressing the special district taxes, Horanburg said, “We have been trying to keep our fees stable or reduce them. I’m really happy with this budget. We’ve been trying to keep things steady, but to be able to bring them (fees) down is really refreshing.”

The board is expected to adopt the budget following the public hearing. The state requires that it be adopted by Nov. 20.

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