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Chatham revenues keep lid on taxes in 2019 budget


CHATHAM–The Town Board held a public hearing on a proposed $3-million budget for 2019 at a special meeting November 1. The meeting was short with no comment from the public on the budget.

Councilman Bob Balcom pointed out that the current budget is $3.4 million which means there will be a 5.5% increase from the 2018 budget. Michael Richardson, a budget and labor relations consultant on the town’s Citizens Finance & Planning Committee, said that revenues are up so the board was able to keep the tax increase low.

Budget Clerk Tammy Shaw said that the revenues for 2019 are budgeted at $1.4 million; in 2018 they were set at $1.2 million.

Mr. Richardson also pointed out that the 2019 proposed budget includes a 2% pay increase for most employees, some upgrades at Crellin Park and funding for the town’s capital reserves.

Mr. Balcom said it will be a 0.8% tax increase for residents who live in the town. For town residents who live in the Village of Chatham the increase will be even smaller.

Supervisor Maria Lull thanked the department heads and Ms. Shaw for their work on the budget. The proposed budget is online at The board will vote to pass the budget at the next regular meeting, November 15 at 6 p.m.

At Thursday’s meeting the board also accepted the resignation of Councilwoman Landra Haber, effective October 31, and passed a motion to advertise for applicants to fill the open seat. The board will appoint a new councilperson.

Addressing another matter the board approved a motion to hire an architecture firm to revise the plans to rebuild a pavilion near the pond at Crellin Park. According to the motion, the board will pay for the architecture work through a bond to finance completion of the pavilion. The board has not yet borrowed the money for the project.

The board did not discuss the proposed new zoning law. Ms. Lull said board members would consider the proposed law again at the December meeting.

The next regular board meeting is November 15 at 6 p.m. in the Town Hall on Route 295.

To contact reporter Emilia Teasdale email

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