Village of Plandome trustees on Monday approved a local law giving the board the ability to override the state-mandated tax cap in formulating the village’s 2015-16 budget if deemed necessary.
“We pass [the law] every year just as a protective measure because of unforeseen circumstances – just to be conservative,” said Elizabeth Kaye, the village’s clerk and treasurer. “We’ve been able to stay under the cap other years.”
If the village were to exceed the tax cap without passing the law, the extra money would be automatically taken out of the next year’s budget – giving trustees less money to work with the following year.
Though Kaye said in her treasurer’s report that the village is appropriately following its 2014-15 budget, she said there is a possibility that the board may exceed the cap in the next fiscal year.
“It’s just hard to because so many budget lines are out of control,” said Kaye. “They’re imposed on you from outside people as opposed to the few things you can control.”
The village’s financial responsibilities toward the Nassau County Police Department account for approximately 40 percent of Plandome’s budget, said Trustee Donald Richardson, who added that additional costs outside the village’s control account for about half its annual expenditures.
Kaye said the village is seeking ways to cut down on expenses and has requested to make payments on a bond ahead of its repayment schedule to save about $85,000.
Another option for the village to keep the budget down is to avoid doing any capital projects in the next year, Kaye said.
“As of now, we are looking at our revenues to budget,” said Kaye. “With our expenses [right now] we’re below budget. We’re at 58 percent for eight months so we’re doing a little bit better than eight out of 12 [66 percent].”