GREENBURGH, N.Y. The long-awaited 2012 Greenburgh budget, which was supposed to be released to the public Monday at 5 p.m., still has not been made available. Some residents are in an uproar that the budget was not public when it was mandated to be.
Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner sent out a budget memo just past midnight Tuesday morning, saying that the full budget would be made public later Tuesday afternoon. Since then, Feiner has cited the tax cap as a reason for the delay, saying that he wanted to make sure the budget was below the cap. He finished the budget at 4:15 p.m. Monday and filed by 4:30 p.m.
The 2012 "A Budget," covering the whole Town of Greenburgh including its six villages, meets the tax cap, standing at $15.6 million, a $100,000 increase from 2011. Its tax levy is up by 2 percent and its tax rate is up by 3.6 percent. It is expected to not use money from the town's fund to sustain itself.
The "B Budget," solely covering unincorporated Greenburgh, stands at $66.6 million, a $1.4 million decrease. It will borrow $1.8 million from the town's fund. The tax levy is up 2 percent. The tax rate is up by 3.3 percent, less than the 3.9 percent rate of inflation during the past year.
Some residents have speculated that the 2 percent tax increase, modified from an original 5 percent increase, means that the Town Board will borrow more money from the town's than they let on.
The budget could mean that the town might face more serious tax problems in the future without the help of unions to resist a tax hike and more job losses. Feiner said that he looks to work closer with unions in the coming year.
Several employees will lose their jobs at Town Hall this year, and any vacated positions will not be filled because of the cost of benefits per employee, which is expected to save the town $1.1 million. Feiner is looking keep all employees in 2012 if unions can help with the cost of benefits.
However, Feiner plans to create two new part-time job openings for a budget officer and an internal auditor. These positions are expected to be salaried at $45,000 and $35,000, respectively, without benefits. Feiner said that he wants to hire them after the budget is approved, possibly in January, although he does not have any potential candidates in mind at the moment. The two jobs are expected to save the town money, but if savings are not seen, the jobs will be discontinued, he said.
Elected officials will not be receiving a raise in 2012. In 2011, Feiner earned $127,232.
The town is also attempting to encourage new businesses to open in Greenburgh to increase revenue. Along with the many restaurants that opened in 2011 (Cari-Blue Café, Bosphorus, Bread Factory Café), several other additions opened like the Yoga Station and Fifth Avenue Chocolatier.
For more information, continue to check the Town of Greenburgh's website later this afternoon for the full budget.
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