Airmont Budget to Increase by over 10%??
Airmont residents, you should be aware of some serious issues with the 2020 budget.
As a refresher to the process, the mayor, along with the village clerk and the village accountant, creates a tentative budget and presents it to the trustees. The trustees then add and subtract to it as they see fit and present the final tentative budget to the public. After the public hearing, the board then votes on whether or not to adopt the budget.
The budget put forth by the mayor includes a cap busting 2.24% tax increase. What is of particular interest is what we are being fleeced for…More services? Nope. Airmont residents must foot the bill for generous kickbacks and favors to the lackeys who made deals with the new administration.
The poorly attended meeting last Thursday, in which 4 Airmont residents attended, was a disgrace. As the board went through each line item they questioned both the mayor and the village clerk as to what expenses made up each line. Neither of them knew what was in the budget. Sadly this is not unexpected. The mayor clearly has no clue as to what is going on yet he presented the budget. He didn’t even know what he was presenting. One has to question how the budget was even created. The village clerk, the treasurer, the person that is supposed to keep track of all accounting in the village, had no answers as to what made up the budget. We won’t even mention that just 2 years ago that very clerk was involved in the budgeting process. We guess emails is not the only thing he “don’t do.”
It’s pretty easy to see who was owed a favor. The mayor’s budget gave a 16.66% raise to the deputy village clerk, a position that has already seen many raises and accommodations from past administrations. Yet the other clerks received no wage increase, zero. The building inspector received no increase either, yet the attorneys received a 14.47% and 20.13% raise each. And don’t even get us started on the new positions that were recently created.
Furthermore, the unbalanced budget requires a more than 40% increase in appropriated surplus, yet the tax cap is still being busted. Money that could be used to fix more roads.
But the worst part is the garbage. As it turns out, the witless mayor thought Airmont was in danger of not having a garbage contract after 2019. The bid for the garbage was only received last week and it is allegedly $200,000 higher than we currently pay. You decide what is worse, the fact that the mayor presented a budget without knowing what things will cost or that his incompetence might raise our taxes more than 10% from last year.
Why don’t you come to the meeting tonight to ask him?