Glen Cove homeowners will see their property taxes rise an average of $4 a month under the 2017 budget proposed Wednesday night by Mayor Reginald Spinello.
Taxes would fall for commercial property owners by $464 for property valued at $1 million.
The draft budget is being finalized and will be posted on the city website, possibly by Friday, Spinello said during a budget discussion at Wednesday’s City Council work session. A public hearing on the budget is scheduled for next Thursday’s council meeting, and a vote is expected on Oct. 25.
Assessed value of property in the city rose, “so really the tax rate has gone down” for homeowners by 1.34 percent, Spinello said. The $48 annual residential tax increase is for a home valued at the city average of $460,000, the mayor said.
The total tax levy would rise 1.5 percent, from $29,352,553 to $29,792,841. That’s above the 0.68 percent state-mandated tax cap, but last year, the tax levy fell nearly 2.7 percent, allowing for the 1.5 percent increase this year, city controller Jeffrey Nogid said.
The budget relies on a projected $3.7 million in revenue from the expected close next month of a land sale to developer RXR Glen Isle Partners for the giant Garvies Point waterfront development.
State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli’s office last year warned Glen Cove against relying too much on “one-shot revenues,” including from “speculative” revenue from Garvies Point, and against borrowing money to pay for tax refunds, as Spinello is proposing again in 2017. The refunds are expected to total about $900,000.
Spinello said in an interview Thursday that if the city did not use the Garvies Point revenue for operating expenses and borrow money for tax refunds, Glen Cove either would have to raise property taxes by a double digit percentage or slash city services, programs and jobs.
“We’re trying to protect the taxpayers and we’re also trying to move forward,” Spinello said, adding: “We have to continue to fill in with one-shot revenue because the funds aren’t there.”
Nogid said the budget continues to pay down the city’s debt, which would drop from about $57 million at the end of this year to $54 million at the end of 2017.
Spinello said the city’s budget had a deficit long before he became mayor in 2014. He pointed to a September DiNapoli report that cited improvements in the city’s financial condition, and an August Moody’s Investors Service upgrade in the city’s financial outlook, as indications Glen Cove is “heading in the right direction.”