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Brightwaters raises taxes 7.5 percent on 3-2 vote
The Brightwaters board of trustees on Wednesday passed in a 3-2 vote a $2.6 million budget, which includes a 7.5 percent tax hike — the village’s first tax increase in 13 years.
The budget represents $98,949 more in spending over the current year’s $2.5 million budget, which village officials said estimates a $200,000 surplus. Homeowners will pay about $84.50 more for every $50,000 of valuation, village officials said.
The tax increase pierced the state tax levy cap, which for Brightwaters was just a shade over 2 percent. But board members said the increase was necessary to repave several damaged village roads. Board members said they anticipated the bulk of the estimated $103,000 raised through the increase, coupled with the surplus, would be used for road paving and pothole repairs.
Mayor Joseph A. McNulty had proposed a zero-tax-increase budget, which failed in a 3-2 vote. “I’m disappointed that we have a tax increase,” McNulty said.
Trustee Denise Gibson, who voted with the mayor against the increase, said fixing roads is a priority.
“We need to be very careful in how we spend that money,” she said.
John J. Riordan — who voted with Tim Cox in support of the tax increase proposed by Robert W. Fischer — said he plans to introduce a resolution at Monday night’s meeting authorizing the village to purchase a $24,000 paving machine.