The proposed budget for 2011 is now available on the City of Hudson website. The mil rate (the tax per $1,000 in assessed value) is 12.198420, down from 14.770500 in 2010--a 17 percent decrease. The total taxable value of properties in Hudson increased from 303,174,231 to 373,232,346, so the taxes on a hypothetical property assessed at $150,000 in 2009 and $250,000 in 2001 will increase from $2,215.58 to $3,049.61--an increase of 38 percent.
In his presentation, Mayor Richard Scalera highlighted these details of the proposed budget. (The following six points are quoted directly from the text of the mayor's presentation.)
1. There will not be salary increases for elected officials, Department Heads, PT 40-hr employees as well as PT hourly employees. The Police Union has previously negotiated a 3% increase for 2011 and CSEA is currently in contract discussions with the city.
2. The long time vacant Washington Hose building noted in last year's message as "quickly approaching when it would be beyond repair," has $350,000 appropriated for immediate restoration work but we also include $300,000 in expected revenues from the sale of City-owned properties to help offset the overall expense.
3. In the Assessor's office the part-time clerk position was cut and added was $68,000 toward the overall cost of a professional revaluation.
4. The city bus operations will be changed over in early January as we now will work within a Cooperative Agreement with the county. The Bus will continue to provide transportation from the City to the surrounding retailers in Greenport and back with expanded hours from the current schedule. This will represent a huge savings to the city and it's the beginning of what we hope to be many cooperative arrangements between the county, city and surrounding communities as we all search for ways to deliver services with cost savings in mind. This will also help our residents in seeking and securing job opporunities as well.
5. Our water and sewer rates will not increase for fiscal year 2011, but with our new water-treatment plant online and our new waste-treatment plant scheduled to be completed next summer, the cost of new technology will undoubtedly be more and holding the line one rate increases of both funds in the future with all factors taken into consideration will be challenging.
6. Our Youth Department also has personnel cuts proposed for 2011 but more changes may be forthcoming. The fact is that we will review this Department to make sure that taxpayer monies spent for Youth Programs will be delivered in the most efficient and effective way possible. We look forward to positive public discussion on the matter and our goal is to use that input resulting in more changes in place by Jan. 1 2012.
A public hearing on the budget will be held at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, November 17.