"I think we're very pleased to be able to report that the proposed budget will entail no increase in taxes whatsoever," said President of the Manchester Village Board of Trustees Brian Knight. "That was due to a very mild winter, very diligent work on the part of our road crew and everyone else. It's important to note that in this budget the grand list, from which all taxes are derived, went down this year for the Town of Manchester and we went down accordingly."
The Grand List for the 2012/2013 is $337,543,980 - a decrease from the previous Grand List of $339,678,889, according to the Village's annual report. The Village also set their tax rate of $0.124 per hundred dollars of assessed property value following the annual meeting on Monday evening. The tax rate was the same the previous year, based on the Village's annual report.
Knight said that the Village was also establishing a reserve fund that would allow them to make heavy equipment purchases when necessary without increasing taxes.
The board also elected officers on Monday evening. Knight was re-elected as president of the board for a one-year term. Trustee Amy Swinarton was re-elected to a two-year term and Village resident Jim Lewis replaced trustee Charles Pufahl who decided not to seek re-election to the
Tom Scarnecchia was re-elected for a one-year term as auditor. Ariel Rudiakov and Pufahl were also elected to one-year terms as auditors, replacing Mary Jo Gourd and Scott Swinarton whose terms expired this year.
The Village's Development Review Board will also see significant turnover this year as four members - including chairwoman Diana Olcott who has served on the board for 14 years - are not returning to the board. In addition to Olcott, board members Sue Robinson, Sheila Foster and Tom Dyett are not returning. Olcott, Foster and Robinson will continue to serve as alternates for the DRB, however.
Although not yet appointed, it is expected that Don Brody, Julie Hanes, Andrea Ross, and Tom Deck - who have all expressed interest serving on the DRB - will become board members when the Village moves forward with nominations next week, according to Knight.
In order to expedite the election process this year, the board nominated a slate of officers who had previously agreed to run for election. Knight said they would also take nominations from the floor, but there were none.
Earlier in the evening Chief of the Manchester Police Department, Michael Hall, gave a presentation and answered questions from the crowd of about 30 people in attendance about safety in the Village. Questions from residents primarily centered around speeding in the Village - particularly on Prospect Street when the school day concludes at Burr and Burton Academy - and the burglaries that have been occurring in the area.
Public Information Officer for the Roundabout Project, Tricia Hayes, followed Hall, giving a presentation about the Roundabout Project and its progress. While the contractor - W.M. Schultz Construction - has until Nov. 15, 2013 to complete the project, they are aiming at completing phases one through three by the end of October and finishing the project sometime in the spring of 2013.