The tentative budget discussed during Wednesday’s workshop totals $7,358,264, which would result in a tax levy increase of 0.270% and a tax rate increase of 0.003%. Alexander Violo/Malone Telegram

MALONE — Trustees went over the tentative budget for the village during a workshop, Wednesday morning.

The tentative budget discussed during Wednesday’s workshop totals $7,358,264, which would result in a tax levy increase of 0.270% and a tax rate increase of 0.003% or $0.0006 per thousand dollars of assessed valuation.

Treasurer Kristine Lashway said the tentative budget includes a tax increase, adding the increase is very small.

Lashway said the village’s tax rate for the current year is 19.73125 and next year’s tax rate will be 19.73182.

According to Lashway, the unexpended balance and reserves in the general fund in the tentative budget is $251,550, down from a figure of approximately $550,000 at the start of the budget process.

“That’s our magic number,” Lashway said, “Our number is there, and we are where we need to be.”

Trustee Brian Langdon asked though this year’s tentative budget had a minimal increase, if future village budgets could have the effect of placing an undue burden on the village’s older residents or those living on fixed incomes.

“Are we going to price ourselves right out of the elderly, the fixed income people, the ones that are having trouble right now buying food, paying for rent, heat, and medicine?” Langdon said.

Mayor Andrea Dumas said the goal was to keep spending tight.

“This next year we are going to be tight on our budget once again, and we are going to get through the next year with no increase, really, it is 0.003,” Dumas said.

Dumas talked about water rates and whether to increase them or not after ongoing water meter replacements in the village.

“We understand within the next couple years we have to go up on water, I would like to see us stay flat this year because it is going to be a change,” Dumas said, “The new water meters are already showing us an increase in water revenue because we have had faulty equipment for so long.”

Dumas thanked Lashway for crunching the numbers and compiling a competitive budget with a minimal tax increase.

Lashway said she believes the village has been very fiscally responsible, stating her appreciation for the time the board spends reviewing and signing bills.

Lashway said the tentative budget will be presented at a village board meeting, Monday.

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