Written by Rich Forestano Thursday, 27 February 2014 00:00
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.
Saturday, 26 July 2014 00:00
The Village of East Williston was recently ruled against in the second round of lawsuits with neighboring Village of Williston Park involving the latter’s water rates—establishing a 13 percent increase from $3.83 per 1,000 gallons of water to $4.33.
Village of East Williston Mayor David Tanner said that the lawsuit, “still does not resolve the underlying problem between the villages, which is we feel that we’re being charged too much for water—the cost is excessive.”
Tanner said the village is still calculating the financial impact will be, and that the village has been making payments in escrow for every water bill received.
Friday, 25 July 2014 00:00
Only once a year a 25-foot movie screen sits in the middle of Wilson Park in Mineola, ready to entertain residents. This year’s Movie Night in the Park feature The LEGO Movie, sponsored by the Village of Mineola and Mineola Chamber of Commerce on Friday, July 18.
The event, which was free of charge to all of the moviegoers, was meant to help promote local Mineola businesses, according to president of the Mineola Chamber of Commerce Bill Greene.
“Small businesses are the backbone of the American industry, and we feel that this is a great way of giving back to the community with hopes that they’ll remember to shop locally,” said Greene.
Thursday, 24 July 2014 00:00
Runners from all over Long Island came to run at the fourth annual Katie Oppo Memorial 5K on Sunday, June 15. The runner first across the finish line was Mineola resident Michael Mariotti, general manager, owner and host of the famous local restaurant Cafe Continental in Manhasset.
The day was glorious as the runners and walkers began their trek through Flower Hill from the starting line at Flower Hill Park. Organizers of this year’s event made the race a USATF Certified 5K race, timed by Long Island Race Timing.
Thursday, 17 July 2014 00:00
Mineola Hurricanes lost a battle of the bats on Sunday, June 29, at St. Joseph’s Field in Kings Park, falling short in a 9-8 ball game against the St. Joseph’s Saints in the first game of a doubleheader.
The top of the first saw the Hurricanes take an early 2-0 lead. The runs came home for the Hurricanes when T.J. McManus scored on an error and Connor Eakin scored on a fielder’s choice. The Saints never surrendered the lead after the first inning, scoring five runs on two errors and an RBI single by Jonathan.