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Port Chester Daily Voice serves Port Chester, NY

Rye Brook Files Preliminary Budget

RYE BROOK, N.Y. -- The Village of Rye Brook released its preliminary budget for the 2012-13 fiscal year earlier this week. The budget, which proposes only a 1.46 percent increase in the property tax cap levy, will be reviewed by the village board of trustees at a workshop on Monday inside the village hall.

The tax levy increase is well below the 2 percent tax cap levy imposed by New York State legislators, and the overall village budget of $18.5 million is a 4.98 percent increase from last year. Village Administrator Chris Bradbury said that the increase is due in large part to capital expenditures.

In his address to Rye Brook Mayor Joan Feinstien and the board of trustees, Bradbury also spoke about the difficulties facing the village in this tough economic climate.

"It is important to keep in mind the long term stability of the organization in performing services and maintaining its capital investments," Bradbury said. "With these impacts in mind, the goals remain to keep the tax levy as low as possible while still delivering essential and quality programs while continuing to re-invest in the infrastructure."

With property tax assessments dipping and tax revenue essentially flat lining, the village has proposed alternative ways to bridge the gap between revenue and expenditures. An almost $400,000 increase in "other revenues" has helped dent some of the automatic increases in employee benefits and personal services.

"On the revenue side, while many traditional revenue sources remain stagnant, the village has been able to increase its non-property tax revenues through the addition of a hotel tax in the last few years," Bradbury said.

The village has also proposed pulling an additional $600,000 fund balance for capital projects. Approximately $650,000 of the near $1 million allocated for capital projects will go towards road resurfacing.

"This has been another challenging budget to prepare," Bradbury wrote. "The staff remains committed to work with the village board members to maintain a budget that is in the best interests of the taxpayers of Rye Brook."

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