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Niagara County adopts $343m spending plan

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Tue, Dec 12th 2017 11:05 pm
County: Tax cut means rates are lowest in decades
By Christian W. Peck
Niagara County Public Information Officer
Niagara County lawmakers approved a $343 million budget plan Tuesday night that reduces spending reducing taxes to their lowest level in decades, at $7.10 per $1,000 of assessed valuation.
That represents a 2.3 percent cut over last year's tax rate.
The budget also included last-minute amendments to include funding for a "Discover Niagara" shuttle and efforts to retain the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station.
The budget was approved 12-1 after the addition of $70,000 in funding for the tourism shuttle traveling from Niagara Falls to Lewiston, and $30,000 to fund operations of the Niagara Military Affairs Council, the grassroots community group that has been one of several efforts to preserve the Air Force base and its nearly 3,000 jobs funded through county appropriations over the years.
Legislature Chairman Wm. Keith McNall, R-Lockport, pointed to the 17 cents per $1,000 reduction in the countywide full value property tax rate, dropping taxes from $7.27 per $1,000 of assessed value to $7.10 per $1,000 of assessed value, as proof county lawmakers are continuing to reduce the burden on county families.
"We've cut taxes - again. Our families deserve a fiscally responsible county government, and this is a fiscally responsible county budget," McNall said. "This represents a year-long budgeting process aimed at containing costs wherever possible, despite the ever-increasing burden of unfunded mandates."
McNall also praised the efforts of County Manager Rick Updegrove to produce a "lean, smart budget."
"Our county manager has done a great job reducing taxes the past two years, reducing spending where he can, and ensuring that our department heads meet targets," McNall added. "The Legislature is very pleased with the budget that he helped us produce."
A table containing municipal tax rates, based upon the separate municipalities' equalization rates, can be downloaded HERE (PDF).

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