The Lynbrook Board of Trustees held a public hearing on the tentative budget for the 2013-14 fiscal year at its board meeting Monday evening at village hall.
The current proposed budget stands at about $37 million for the fiscal year of June 1, 2013 to May 31, 2014, which is only 2 percent above New York State’s 2 percent cap.
The budget originally called for an 8 percent tax increase, but the board of trustees was able to reduce the tax increase to 5.8 percent.
Village Administrator and Budget Officer John Giordano said the board has identified a number of budget cuts that will further lower the tax rate increase. Giordano noted that about 25 percent of the increase is due to mandated state costs.
From a revenue standpoint, Giordano said that the village is not at the same levels in interest earnings that the village experienced five years ago. This year's interest earnings are expected to reach only $75,000, rather than the $600,000 of five years ago, due to a decline in interest rates.
The village expects to receive revenue from a $200,000 FEMA reimbursement due to Hurricane Sandy, as well as a $1.2 million credit for bond funds received for reimbursement to the village for police department severance payments. The bond also includes money on reserve for future severance payments.
The village also learned on Monday from Sen. Dean Skelos, R-Rockville Centre, that Lynbrook’s annual grant for highway improvement increased by $50,000 in the new state budget.
As far as expenses, there was a $364,000 increase on state retirement health insurance premiums. However, Giordano was happy to report that the village’s tax cert refunds were down by $60,000.
Lynbrook was also able to save around $85,000 through the village’s recycling efforts, due to less materials being disposed to the landfill. Giordano also noted that the village recently renegotiated a contract with the resource recovery plant that lowered per ton fees.
The village will further save money with the retirement of eight senior police officers. Those vacancies will be filled by low-paid recruits.
Giordano said that the village expects a surplus of $1.5 million dollars from the current fiscal year. This surplus coupled with last year’s closing surplus of $4.7 million results in a $6.2 million surplus.
“It’s a good, healthy balance and it covers us for future tax stabilization,” Giordano said.
The tentative budget will be further discussed at the board’s April 15 meeting and copies of the budget can be found online at the village’s website.