Wednesday night, the Town of Pomfret passed its 2013 budget, which includes a tax increase of 15 cents on every $1,000 assessed within the Village of Fredonia, and about 13 additional cents on every $1,000 for property owners outside the village. The rate will be about $3.94 per $1,000 in the village and about $5.43 per $1,000 outside the village.
The total operating budget is just under $7.5 million, of which, more than $6 million is expected from revenues. An additional $340,000 will carry over from unexpended general fund balance, leaving the total amount required to be raised by taxes at $1,048,150.
At a previous meeting, Councilperson David Penharlow explained the town had an increase of $45,000 in the fire protection district and over $50,000 in workers' compensation costs. "So we had to deal with about $100,000 in expenses and ... only increased the budget by about $52,000," he explained.
OBSERVER Photo by Shirley Pulawski
Councilpersons David Penharlow (left) Patricia Christina (middle) and Super-visor Donald Steger (right) discussed plans to review zoning laws as part of end-of-year Pomfret business.
Of several large companies which filed for assessment reductions, Town Supervisor Donald Steger said to date, only Lucky Lanes has its county court case. Steger said the business won a reduction in court, but that he only expects it to cost the town about $2,000 for the assessment period. "It may affect the village (of Fredonia) or (Fredonia Central) more, but I can't say for sure," he explained.
Other annual business was discussed at the meeting. The board is planning to review town zoning laws beginning in December. Among items to be discussed is the current wind energy law.
Steger said if the board plans on making changes to allow for wind towers recommended by New York State Energy Resource and Development Authority (NYSERDA), "It's not a simple change to make. ... We must approach this with a well-rounded outlook." He explained NYSERDA offers grants to residents for some kinds of construction, but may be designed for more rural areas with less population density, where a fallen tower would be unlikely to damage neighboring property. The board will begin reviewing zoning laws at its Dec. 5 meeting.
Also scheduled is the organizational meeting for the upcoming year, which will be combined with the year-end meeting. It will be held Dec. 31 at 10 a.m. in the Town Hall.
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