By Jennifer Weber
The Village of Springville Board of Trustees met on Monday, March 5. Mayor Bill Krebs opened the meeting with a public hearing on the tentative 2018-2019 budget (fiscal year runs June 1, 2018 through May 31, 2019).
Krebs described the proposed budget as one that will “provide efficient services with a modest cost increase without going over the tax cap.”
The proposed 2018-2019 budget will see a tax rate increase from 1.6 percent to $17.26/1000 with the tax levy set at $1,762,527 or 1.72 percent higher than last year (tax levy cap is $1,785,313 or 3 percent.) Total appropriations are $3,447,872, which is an increase of $19,235 from last year’s budget by 0.6 percent.
“The rise in the appropriations budget line comes from projects including Franklin Street, Heritage Park and the Public Safety Building,” explained Krebs.
Projects account for a $331,844 increase from 2015. Overall trend is less than 3 percent growth.
The Village pays for the appropriated $3,447,872 through the following budget lines:
• Property Tax Levy: $1,762,527
• Other Revenues: $1,450,345
• Unappropriated Fund Balance: $235,000
The general fund is the plan to pay for Village services and community development projects. Property taxes provide for 51 percent of this fund, with a large portion, 48 percent, going toward public safety and streets.
Krebs also reported that taxable property valuation has increased by $161,125 this year and the Village is experiencing flat trend growth. With a total of 1,659 parcels in the Village for a total taxable value of $153,289,947, 33 percent of these parcels are exempt from taxes, which is a value of $51,168,187. This makes the total taxable value of parcels in the Village to be $102,121,760.
The current Unappropriated Fund Balance for the Village is $1,477,356. New York State suggests municipalities carry a healthy fund balance, which Springville has and is able to use this balance to leverage grants revenue such as $300,000 from Erie County for Smart Growth for Franklin and Mechanic Street, $325,000 from Erie County Smart Growth for Heritage Park and Factory Street, $30,000 from NY Main Municipal Projects and $12,000 from the Springville-Griffith Community Education Foundation for the Rail Trail.
“We are using this unappropriated fund balance to spend on specific projects not to pay the payroll,” explained Krebs. “It’s a smart use to dip into funds for the quality of life in Springville; these things are very visible and very important to us.”
The Enterprise Funds (Sewer, Water and Electric) are separated accounting lines that must be balanced every year and are not supported by tax revenues.
The Water Fund appropriations for 2018-2019 is $1,197,939 which is a decrease of $14,771 or 1 percent from last year. This fund pays for the pumping, purification, transmission of water in the Village and will include water pump repairs on Well #1 and the scheduled replacement of a truck in the coming budget year.
Sewer Fund appropriations are $779,854, which is an increase of $7,873 or 1 percent over last year. This rate increase will correct a funding shortage for this year due to a negative fund balance in 2016, mitigate aging concrete problems at the plant and the infiltration problems in sewer pipes.
The Electric Fund pays for the purchase and transmission of electric power, which has set rates controlled by Public Service Commission.
Trustee Terry Skelton commented that it is a “fiscally responsible budget.”
Anyone looking for more information about the proposed 2018-2019 budget can view the public hearing presentation online at www.villageofspringvilleny.com.
In other news, Board Administrator Liz Melock reminded the public that the Village election will take place on Tuesday, March 20, at 65 Franklin Street from 12 – 9 p.m. The last day to register to vote in the election is March 9. Residents who would like to vote by absentee ballot can contact the village office by March 13 to receive an application.
The board voted to accept changes to the fee structure for the following:
• 60-22 Chicken License $100
• 155-77 Subdivision Final Approval Fee $75 per lot plus engineering costs
• 193-91 Water Permit Inspection $100
• 193-70 Sewer Permit Inspection $100
Superintendent Ken Kostowniak gave an update on the recent winter snowstorm on Friday, March 2, stating that it took longer than expected to clear all the roads, sidewalks, parking lots because of the very heavy snow which was causing plows to get stuck. All power was restored to Village residents by Friday evening and the Department aided Salamanca, Boston and Concord over the weekend.
The next meeting of the Springville Board of Trustees will be held on Monday, March 19, 7 p.m. at 65 Franklin Street, starting with a public hearing on proposed Local Law 2 of 2018 – Revisions to Chapter 200-8.1 Zoning Chapter Retail Overlay District Changes and Zoning Map Amendments.