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City Holds Public Hearing On Proposed Budget

Final public hearing will be held at the Oct. 23 Glen Cove City Council meeting before adopting the budget

At the Oct. 9 Glen Cove City Council meeting, the first public hearing was held to discuss the proposed budget for 2013. The hearing will remain open before the council votes, and one more public hearing will be held on Oct. 23.

The proposed budget would increase taxes in Glen Cove 1.94 percent next year, a figure that Mayor Ralph V. Suozzi said was trimmed down from the original 7.42 percent he received from the city controller, Sal Lombardi. He said that, after going over the numbers with Lombardi, the budget he first presented to the council was 2.81 percent and they worked hard together to get it under 2 percent. The percentage represents a $558,087 increase in real estate taxes. The proposed budget plan totals $46,746,289, an increase of $106,182 or 0.2 percent from this year’s budget.

In 2012, the city received 63 percent of its revenues from real property taxes, 24 percent from general fund revenues, 7 percent from water rents, 3 percent from recreation fees and 2 percent from police fees. For 2013, the only projected changes are from real property taxes, which would increase to 65 percent, and police fees, which decrease to 1 percent of the total revenue. In the expenditures category for budget appropriations, government support would increase to 12 percent from 10 percent; public safety would decrease to 23 percent from 24 percent; culture and recreation would decrease from 10 percent to 9 percent; home and community service would decrease from 11 percent to 8 percent; fringe benefits would decrease to 21 percent from 23 percent, and the areas of debt service (19 percent) and transportation (5 percent) would remain the same.

Republican Committee Chair Paul Meli asked several questions about the budget, and also asked for clarification about how the budget process works.

It was explained by the mayor and the controller that each department head presents their budget and adjustments are made by the controller after discussing them with each department. The mayor and controller then have a discussion and the mayor presents that draft to the council. They then work to reduce it even more.

“There were requests made that we took out,” Suozzi said, referring to some of the ways they were able to lower the budget.

Meli suggested that the process begin earlier in the year, to give the taxpayers a chance to process the numbers and give their input.

Councilman Reggie Spinello said, “We have another pre-council meeting, and another council meeting…I’m going to really look at the numbers, I want to try to get it even lower – but I want it to be realistic…we’ve got to dive in deep and look for savings.”

Mayor Suozzi agreed they would work hard to get it even lower, adding, “When we lower the budget unrealistically, we throw a deficit into the mix. If we can get it lower, we will.”

The proposed budget is available for the public to view on the city’s website, www.glencove-li.us/, under the budget and finance section.

News

 It has been five years since a particularly heavy rainfall closed all the beaches in Glen Cove including Crescent Beach. As per Nassau County Department of Health standards, beaches are ordered closed after heavy rainfall because of storm water runoff that adversely affects bacteria levels at local beaches. Typically, bacteria levels subside within a day or so, allowing for the beaches to be reopened. This was not the way it went with one popular beach after the June 2009 rain storm.

 

“Unfortunately, this was not the case with Crescent Beach,” said Glen Cove Parks & Recreation Director, Darcy Belyea, at last Wednesday night’s public forum at Glen Cove City Hall. “Elevated levels of microbiological contamination continued to be found in the bathing water months after the heavy rain and recent samples show they are still elevated today.”

 

Belyea was one of a number of panelists at the public forum, which included Glen Cove Mayor Reginald Spinello, City Attorney Charles McQuair, Director of the Hempstead Harbor Protection Committee Eric Swenson and representatives from the Nassau County Department of Health. 

Movie lovers once again have a chance to see first-run films in the theater without having to travel far. Glen Cove Cinemas re-opened last week, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and free films offered to celebrate the occasion. 

 

“Thanks to all of the support we have here and all of you, Glen Cove is once again open for business,” said Mayor Reginald Spinello at the ceremony, held outside the theater on Thursday, April 10. “We were scheduled to open last week, and there were a few things that weren’t ready...I got a call from the theater operator, Jay Levinson, and he told me that unfortunately, that day Spiderman had the flu,” he joked. “But, Spiderman is well and Glen Cove is well, and we are coming back strong. This is just the beginning. This is going to be so good for Glen Cove and the surrounding communities.”


Sports

 

Glen Cove High School players, from left, Tajah Garner, Dejon Taylor, Manny Sican, and Ralik Jackson, after the Long Island Colts u18’s team vs. St. Anthony’s at Robert Finley Middle School last week. Touchdown ‘tries’ by Garner, Taylor and Sican.


The third- and fourth-grade Knights took to the road last weekend as they faced off against Jericho early Sunday morning, April 6.  Jericho’s teamwork and hustle brought down the Knights by a final score of 5 – 0.  The early game may have been a factor as the boys started to play better and more like a team as the game went on.  Once again, goalie Tyler Shea played outstanding in goal and was relieved by Christian Maiorano, who did just as well in the second half.  Andrew Guster played solid defense in the loss.


Calendar

Eggstravaganza - April 16

Live Music - April 16

Community Easter Egg Hunt - April 19


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com