by Joshua Maloni
The tax rate in the Village of Lewiston will remain the same for another year.
Trustees approved a $3,339,986 budget for 2013-14 on Monday. This includes a tax rate of $7.12 per $1,000 of assessed valuation, which is the same as the 2012-13 tax rate.
"I'm happy," Mayor Terry Collesano said. "We were very diligent in our cutting. Our scalpels came out."
The board was able to maintain the tax rate while increasing the budget from $3,298,631 to $3,339,986 thanks, in large part, to lower bond fees. The village's general government support schedule 1-A debt service will fall to $83,525 for the next fiscal year, down from $122,150.
Bonds represent a way for Lewiston, like other villages and towns, to borrow money to pay for large-scale projects.
With expiring bonds coming off the budget, trustees plan to apply for new bonds.
"Now we'll be able to do more, thank God," Collesano said. "More drainage work, sewer work, water work."
Board members had previously said it was their intent to reduce residential water and sanitary sewer consumption fees. They now intend to adopt two proposed local laws amending sections 20-139 and 20-194 of the village code. Such changes would lower the sanitary sewer rate from $4.65 per 100 cubic feet of water consumed to $4.59 (a 6-cent decrease), and the water rate from $3.55 per 100 cubic feet of water consumed to $3.49 (also a 6-cent decrease). Additionally, trustees seek to remove the $5-per-billing-cycle surcharge.
If approved, these changes would take effect July 1.
Prior to an amendment in the village code, trustees are required to hold a public hearing. The board will hold such a meeting at 6 p.m. Monday, April 15, at the Red Brick Municipal Building, 145 N. Fourth St.