I have presented a Preliminary Budget to the Town Board that, to the best of my ability, strikes a reasonable balance between continuing to provide essential Police, Highway and Town services while placing the least burden possible on our taxpayers. Spending on General Government, excluding Police and Highway, is essentially flat. Police services and the Highway Department comprise 67% of the budget. Contractual costs, as well as health and retirement costs for these departments are up during this year’s budget. The New York State imposed Tax Cap is 1.86% or an approximately $250,000 allowable increase for the Town. Most of this cap is consumed by the increased cost of maintaining our excellent Police Department that keeps our residents safe. Repair and maintenance of over 200 miles of roads required additional money to be allocated this year. We continue to look for cost savings by sharing services with not only our three Villages but with other Towns in Orange County to reduce costs while maintaining services. The Preliminary Budget as presented reflects an increase of approximately $9.44 for the average house (Average Market Value House is $370,000) in the Villages who only pay for services not provided by the Villages themselves. For Town residents living outside a Village the increase will be $52 for the average house. A Public Hearing on the Preliminary Budget will be held on Thurs, Nov. 9 at 7:30 p.m. in the Warwick Town Hall, 132 Kings Hwy. in Warwick.
On Nov. 11 at 11 a.m. our nation will observe Veterans Day. The origin is, of course, to signify the end of the “Great War” on the 11th day at the 11th hour of the 11th month. In the days that followed, it was generally regarded that this had been the war to end all wars. Sadly, this was not the case as our nation has experienced many others as our great armed forces have proudly defended our freedom and ideals. Please join any one of the three remembrances in our Town on Nov. 11 that honor all those who have or are serving. Services will be held in the Village of Warwick at Memorial Park, in the Village of Greenwood Lake at the Arthur Finnegan American Legion Post and in the Village of Florida at the memorial on Main St. Warwick Town Hall will be closed on Fri., Nov. 10 in observance of Veterans Day.
Our recycling hauler, County Waste, will be OPEN on Fri., Nov. 10; therefore, all recycling will be picked up on schedule.
The next regular meeting of the Town Board will be held on Thurs., Nov. 16 at 7:30 p.m. in the Warwick Town Hall, located at 132 Kings Hwy. in Warwick.
The above column, written by Warwick Town Supervisor Michael Sweeton, has been published in the Nov. 8 issue of the Warwick Valley Dispatch.