FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 31, 2019
MEDIA CONTACTS: Carole Trottere, Rebecca Cheng and Matthew Leonenko | (516) 869-7794
North Hempstead Approves 2020 Budget Plan, Stays Under Tax Cap
North Hempstead, NY – The Town of North Hempstead’s 2020 budget was approved last night by Supervisor Judi Bosworth and Council Members Viviana Russell, Peter Zuckerman, Angelo Ferrara, and Veronica Lurvey. Council Member Dina De Giorgio rejected the plan. Council Member Lee Seeman was not present. The $135.5 million plan stays within the New York State tax cap and includes no cuts to services for residents.
For the fourth consecutive year the final budget was voted on prior to Election Day.
“This 2020 budget continues to represent the fiscally conservative practices of my administration, while continuing to deliver essential services to our residents,” said Supervisor Bosworth. “I am grateful to our Comptroller Tania Orenstein and her staff for presenting this fair and responsible spending plan for our Town.”
The budget plan includes $69.5 million for the general fund, $38.2 million for the Town outside Village fund and $27.8 million in our Town Operated Special Districts. The General Fund tax levy increased by just 1.2%, an average of $6.31 per household. The Town Outside Village Fund tax levy increased by .39%, an average of $6.93 per household.
The Town has reduced debt by $27.5 million dollars since 2014 and Moody’s Investors Service (Moody’s) affirmed the Town’s financial rating of AAA in September, the highest a municipality can obtain.
“The Town’s top bond rating is the direct result of our conservative and careful guardianship of taxpayer funds,” said the Supervisor.
For the 2020 budget the Town adopted new methodology to calculate administrative fees charged to the more than 46 special districts within the Town for central department services that are provided by Town departments such as the Receiver of Taxes, Town Attorney and the Information Technology Department. Historically, the Town performs these responsibilities for the special districts for efficiency and government mandated purposes. The Town board unanimously voted to approve a contract with Maximus, a consulting company that specializes in streamlining government services, to review the Town’s methods for calculating these fees.
“The new methodology that we have adopted is the same used by New York Division of the Budget,” said Supervisor Bosworth. “It is more sophisticated, more precise and is based on the actual use of these services, rather than the size of the special district’s budget.
The October 30 budget vote follows a series of work sessions and public hearings held throughout the months of September and October, during which time the public’s suggestions, and reactions by the public.