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Tax Cap Talk

The Mineola Village Board enacted the 2 percent tax cap override at last week’s board of trustees meeting, voting 3-0. Trustees Paul Cusato and George Durham were absent from the vote. This will give the village the ability to exceed the tax cap if needed.

 

“We’ve done this every year since the 2 percent cap law has been put on the books,” Mayor Scott Strauss said. “We have no intention this year, just like last year, of going over the cap.”

 

Budget hearings have not been scheduled yet. This is the earliest the village has enacted the override. Last year, Mineola activated the override in April.

 

The final tax cap calculations are set by New York State, but errors can occur, which is why village reps say they voted for the override.

 

“This is a safety valve for us in case some calculations are inaccurate,” said Strauss. ‘We don’t want to get caught up in fines or formula errors.”

 

Mineola resident Chris Wales is curious why an override is needed due to error. “Wouldn’t it just be voided if it were an error,” he said.

 

“Nope,” Strauss said. “You’re held to the numbers you are given and you give back. Some of those numbers are guesstimates and based on some information we don’t even have yet.”

 

In 2003, Mineola had approximately $33 million in bonded indebtedness. The village’s outstanding bonding is now less than $14 million.

 

“The Village of Mineola is on solid financial ground,” Strauss said. “We’ve done really well with the debt management plan that’s been put before us. We’ve done well with the projects that have come before the village. We plan to hold the line this year.”

 

The tax cap limits the increase in property taxes each year for school districts and local municipalities to 2 percent, or the rate of inflation. If a community chooses to increase taxes more than the tax cap allows, a 60 percent vote by a local legislative body can override it. A local municipality would need to enact it each year to have the ability to exercise it.

 

“It’s the prudent thing to do,” Deputy Mayor Paul Pereira said. “Have this just in case there are issues. Not necessarily on our end but on the state’s end.”

 

Mineola last year adopted a budget increase of .74 percent. The board originally floated a 1 percent increase when it released the tentative figures last April.

 

The 2013-14 budget was certified at $21,718,808. Tax revenue topped off at $13,282,158, a $63,248 increase from 2012-13.

News

Winthrop University Hospital employee Jeffrey Brenner, a hyperbaric technician with the Life Support Technologies group in Mineola, recently received the American Heart Association’s prestigious Louis J. Acampora Heart Saver Award at a dinner at the Crest Hollow Country Club. The award is named for a Long Island teenager who succumbed to a sporting injury that is understood to have been preventable if a cardiac medical device had been immediately on-scene and applied. 

 

“I hope that I have made a real difference in my town and the world around me to help prevent death and improve the quality of people’s lives” said Brenner.

The Wheatley School recently hosted an Item Writing Workshop for more than 100 language teachers representing districts across New York State.  The workshop was sponsored by the Foreign Language Association of Chairpersons and Supervisors (FLACS), the professional organization that has assumed responsibility for the creation and administration of the FLACS

Checkpoint A and B Exams (formerly the NYS Second Language Proficiency and Regents Exams).


Sports

After consecutive seasons of finishing runner-up in the men’s golf Player of the Year for the Skyline Conference, Christian Bleck of St. Joseph’s took home first place in a rather unlikely turn of events. 

 

After a herniated disc caused the Chaminade High School alum to miss every event after the first week of the season until the conference tournament, Bleck returned—without even having the luxury of practicing a full 18 holes—and competed with the best players the conference has to offer. 

Cross-Country Crowned Champs

The Mineola Mustang boys cross-country team won the division 4A championship recently at Bethpage State Park.  This is the first championship for the program since 1974, ending a 40-year championship drought. 

 

Mineola defeated Seaford, who also entered the undefeated in division competition, 38-20.  Overcoming rain and high winds throughout the race, many Mustangs ran personal records for the 5K in route to the victory.


Calendar

Mineola School Meeting - November 20

Fools Rush In - November 21

Mustangs Face Roosevelt - November 22 


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