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City Holds Public Hearing On Proposed Budget

Final public hearing will be held at the Oct. 23 Glen Cove City Council meeting before adopting the budget

At the Oct. 9 Glen Cove City Council meeting, the first public hearing was held to discuss the proposed budget for 2013. The hearing will remain open before the council votes, and one more public hearing will be held on Oct. 23.

The proposed budget would increase taxes in Glen Cove 1.94 percent next year, a figure that Mayor Ralph V. Suozzi said was trimmed down from the original 7.42 percent he received from the city controller, Sal Lombardi. He said that, after going over the numbers with Lombardi, the budget he first presented to the council was 2.81 percent and they worked hard together to get it under 2 percent. The percentage represents a $558,087 increase in real estate taxes. The proposed budget plan totals $46,746,289, an increase of $106,182 or 0.2 percent from this year’s budget.

In 2012, the city received 63 percent of its revenues from real property taxes, 24 percent from general fund revenues, 7 percent from water rents, 3 percent from recreation fees and 2 percent from police fees. For 2013, the only projected changes are from real property taxes, which would increase to 65 percent, and police fees, which decrease to 1 percent of the total revenue. In the expenditures category for budget appropriations, government support would increase to 12 percent from 10 percent; public safety would decrease to 23 percent from 24 percent; culture and recreation would decrease from 10 percent to 9 percent; home and community service would decrease from 11 percent to 8 percent; fringe benefits would decrease to 21 percent from 23 percent, and the areas of debt service (19 percent) and transportation (5 percent) would remain the same.

Republican Committee Chair Paul Meli asked several questions about the budget, and also asked for clarification about how the budget process works.

It was explained by the mayor and the controller that each department head presents their budget and adjustments are made by the controller after discussing them with each department. The mayor and controller then have a discussion and the mayor presents that draft to the council. They then work to reduce it even more.

“There were requests made that we took out,” Suozzi said, referring to some of the ways they were able to lower the budget.

Meli suggested that the process begin earlier in the year, to give the taxpayers a chance to process the numbers and give their input.

Councilman Reggie Spinello said, “We have another pre-council meeting, and another council meeting…I’m going to really look at the numbers, I want to try to get it even lower – but I want it to be realistic…we’ve got to dive in deep and look for savings.”

Mayor Suozzi agreed they would work hard to get it even lower, adding, “When we lower the budget unrealistically, we throw a deficit into the mix. If we can get it lower, we will.”

The proposed budget is available for the public to view on the city’s website, www.glencove-li.us/, under the budget and finance section.

News

The Glen Cove Board of Education passed the Alternative Veterans’ Exemption for taxes following last week’s public hearing at Robert M. Finley Middle School, to the appreciation of the veterans in attendance.

 

Several dozen vets arrived promptly at 6 p.m. at the middle school to express their support for the tax exemption. Many noted that they get tax breaks from the city and county, but are still left with the ever-growing school tax bill.

 

“We’re having a hard time with our taxes, especially the school tax,” said the first veteran to speak.

This year marks the 35th anniversary of The Sea Cliff Village Museum. Founded in 1979, the museum serves as a place to preserve and publicly display historical items of  past Sea Cliff residents. The museum displays both temporary and permanent collections from the 18th through 20th centuries. Most of the items and artifacts in the museum have been donated by residents of Sea Cliff who want to share them with the rest of the North Shore community. 


Sports

The Glen Cove Junior Lacrosse Club kicked off their 20th season with the third- and fourth-grade boys winning their home opener against Deer Park on a moist and muddy Sunday morning.  

Despite the weather forecast, the boys were determined to play after spending the last three months practicing indoors. It was a hard fought battle with the lead changing several times, but at the end Glen Cove managed to hold on for a 6 – 5 victory.  

Anchoring the victory was goalie Tyler Shea, who stopped several point blank one-on-ones and recorded 13 saves in the game. The offense started slow, but began clicking as the game went on. Providing the firepower was Ryan Houghton with two goals and Micah Stone, Eamon Doyle, Andrew Epifania and Lukasz Dubicki, each adding one.  Epifania and Andrew Bisch each had an assist in the winning effort.

Glen Cove High School hosted the PTSA-sponsored Red vs. Green Games last month, an evening of traditional and non-traditional sporting activities in which students and adults represented their schools of past and present allegiance by donning either red- or green-colored attire. Students of all ages came to their schools the day of the event wearing either red or green. Gribbin and Connolly elementary schools are traditional green schools while Deasy and Landing are red schools. 


Calendar

Kiddie Egg Hunt - April 11

Offbeat Artifacts Sale - April 12 

Glen Cove Eggstravaganza - April 16


Columns

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

Sustainable LI: Getting Good Things Done
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

LI’s ‘Most Prominent Lady In Politics’
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com