LITTLE VALLEY — Cattaraugus County lawmakers got their first look Wednesday at the tentative $188 million county budget for 2007 — and it wasn’t too bad.
The tax levy — or amount to be raised by property taxes — is up 4.1 percent. Also, the full-value tax rate drops for a second consecutive year, County Administrator Jack Searles said in his budget review.
He said the increase matches an average of the consumer price index for the Northeast over the past six months.
He proposes to use $1.5 million of the county’s $17 million surplus to reduce the tax levy. That is $500,000 less than what was used to reduce taxes in the 2006 budget.
– The county tax rates will rise for some and will lower for others “due to equalization rates”; the full-value tax rate decreases – second year in a row.
– There will be no additional new hires.
– The county is benefiting from the state cap on Medicaid and improvements to nursing home reimbursement. ($504,935 saved in subsidies)
– The Public Works Dept. and Sheriff’s Dept. will receive additional funding.
– Additional costs attributed to retirement, health insurance, workers’ compensation, ($400,000) and the Help America Vote Act are reflected in the budget.
– The Cattaraugus Olean Airport will receive $22,000. $60,000 was received in 2006; $140,000 was requested.
County Legislature committees start their review of the tentative budget Monday with Development and Agriculture, County Operations and Public Works meetings, and Tuesday with Public Safety, Human Services and Senior Services. Committee meetings start at 12:30 p.m. both days. On Thursday, the Finance Committee will meet at 6 p.m. to review any proposed changes.
The budget hearing is scheduled for 3 p.m. Nov. 21 prior to its adoption.