Middletown budget shows slight increase

Staff Report
Restoring some earlier cuts, the Middletown Town Board passed a 2012 budget last Wednesday that reflects a 1.9 percent increase in the tax levy.

Town officials reported this week that because of the omission of a bond interest expenditure from the final budget, the document will be reconsidered at a special meeting on Thursday, Nov. 17 at 4 p.m. at the town hall.

Following the November 9 public budget hearing, the majority of the board agreed that a decision to make 13.5 percent in contractual expenses for departments would jeopardize the highway crew’s snow removal capabilities.

Superintendent of Highways John Biruk presented a breakdown of his department’s winter budget at the town’s workshop meeting on November 1. He asked that the board consider scaling back on some of the proposed funding cutbacks.

At Wednesday’s meeting, the board agreed to restore $40,000 to the highway budget. The majority of the funds will be applied to the snow removal budget, with the balance allocated for equipment repairs.

Supervisor Len Utter and board members Michael Finberg, John Roucek and Brian Sweeney voted in favor of the budget. Board Member Jake Rosa voted against the budget, saying he favored keeping the zero percent tax levy increase proposed in the Preliminary Budget.