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Mayor's Report: February 20, 2014

New York State Fiscal Stress Test Results

New York State Comptroller DiNapoli recently released the results of his latest fiscal stress monitoring assessments. The results categorized villages into four categories, “significant stress”, “moderate stress”, “susceptible to stress” and no designation. The assessments were made as of May 31, 2013 using a series of financial ratio calculations. Garden City scored 50 percent on the rating scale; a rating that put us in the “susceptible to stress” category. Had we scored 45 percent or below, we would not have received any stress designation.

Our results reflected, in part, the fact that our cash balances were low on May 31, 2013 largely due to the fact that we had spent $6 million on Sandy recovery efforts and were awaiting reimbursement, which we have now received. Our rating also reflected, in part, our practice of maintaining low levels of unallocated fund balances (general reserves). We have done so, in part, because in the current low interest rate environment, we haven’t been rewarded for raising additional funds from taxpayers and holding them in the very low-yielding, highly secure investments to which we are limited. Be assured that we monitor our liquidity and capital levels carefully and publicly report on it monthly. We have very strong credit ratings, and the board of trustees and I believe that our village’s financial condition is strong and our finances are being prudently managed.

Safe Disposal Of Refuse

A reminder to residents that the following guidelines are to be used in the disposition of refuse in order to protect our employees:

1. Sharp objects, such as broken glass, sharp pieces of metal and knives should not be placed loosely in plastic or paper bags.  Proper precaution should be taken, such as placing them in cardboard boxes tied with string or tape.

2. All hypodermic needles should be bent and the point blunted.

3. Dust from vacuum cleaners, barbecue pits and sandings from wooden floors should not be placed loosely in a trash barrel. They should be placed in a paper bag or plastic container for disposal.

4. Dangerous objects, such as acid, gasoline and explosives, should not be placed in garbage or rubbish. If you have any questions concerning the disposal of dangerous items, please call the sanitation department.

5. Do not overload containers. The maximum weight per container is 40 lbs. Overloading containers with heavy objects, such as broken concrete, has resulted in back injuries to our personnel.

Shop And Dine In Garden City And Enjoy The Experience

I encourage residents to make a conscious effort to choose Garden City as the place to shop and dine. It would be extremely helpful to our business community if you could make one purchase daily in the Village stores. Customer service, selection and quality are outstanding. While shopping or dining let the merchant know that you appreciate them and all that they offer. I look forward to seeing everyone in town.

Budget Work Sessions

I would like to advise you that the board of trustees will be conducting work sessions to review the proposed 2014-15 operating/capital budgets on:

Thursday, Feb. 27 - 7:30 p.m. (Budget Study/Work Session 2)

Thursday, March 13 - 7:30 p.m. (Budget Study/Work Session 3, if necessary)

Board Of Trustees Meeting Schedule

The next regularly scheduled board of trustees meeting will be on Tuesday, Feb. 18, at 8 p.m. We also remind those residents who are grieving their taxes that this is also Grievance Night which begins at 5:30 p.m. and ends at 9:30 p.m. I encourage all residents to attend board of trustees meetings so as to be thoroughly informed of village issues from a first-hand perspective. I hope to see you at one these meeting during the year.