Babylon Village Hall.

Babylon Village Hall. Credit: T.C. McCarthy

Babylon Village trustees have given themselves the authority to exceed the state’s 2 percent cap on tax levy increases in the 2012-13 budget.

Trustees voted unanimously Tuesday night with a handful of residents in attendance, one of whom questioned the move. “I believe in the tax cap,” Kate Curtin told trustees following their vote. “Taxes have been rising for such a long time that it’s getting difficult for people like myself, who are retired, to stay here. I was hoping you wouldn’t move so quickly or so automatically.”

Mayor Ralph Scordino answered that an increase of less than 2 percent to Babylon’s relatively small budget could make it difficult for the village to pay rising employee benefit obligations and cover other expenses such as fuel and electricity.

A 2 percent increase to the village’s current $8.1 million budget would be $162,000.

Babylon’s budget is due March 20. Last year’s budget increased the property tax by 3.73 percent, or 45 cents per every $100 of assessed value.

“I will try very hard to keep taxes at a reasonable amount,” Scordino said.

Above: Babylon Village Hall