Great Neck Estates trustees on Monday approved their 2018-19 proposed $9.5 million budget, which is about $74,392 – about 0.78 percent – higher than the current $9.43 million budget.
The spending plan, which will take effect in June, features a decrease in the tax rate but, due to the increased assessed value of village homes, an overall increase in the tax levy from $7.67 million to $7.74 million.
Revenue from other sources like parking meters, permits, fees and fines – worth $1.5 million – is the second biggest source, followed by an appropriated fund balance worth $250,000.
Employee benefits, which include retirement funds, Social Security, workers’ compensation and health insurance, will see the most significant increase in the budget, rising $134,983 from $2.17 million to $2.3 million.
Employee medical, dental and optical insurance, which are grouped into one line item, will rise from $1.01 million to $1.1 million, workers’ compensation costs will increase from $108,000 to $140,000 and New York police retirement costs will increase from $550,000 to $570,000.
Social Security and Medicare costs will also go up from $263,026 to $275,000 and state disability insurance costs will go up slightly from $7,750 to $7,957.
State employee retirement costs will be the only decrease within the employee benefits, going down $20,000 from $220,000 to $200,000, while state unemployment costs will remain the same at $5,000.
Public safety costs, currently the largest item within the budget at $3.73 million, will decrease to $3.7 million.
The main driver of the public safety costs is the Great Neck Estates Police Department, which accounts for approximately $2.81 million in the adopted budget. This is $35,290 lower than the current $2.84 million.
In the adopted budget, Fire Department and water costs are projected to decrease from $702,528 to $698,131, while general safety costs will go up from $188,880 to $191,121.
Government support costs are also projected to decrease, from $1 million to $994,004.
Culture and recreational items like the village parks, pool and center for the arts will increase from $828,400 in the current budget to $854,623 in the adopted budget. This increase is mainly from maintaining the parks, whose costs will go up from $552,700 to $592.323, a rise of $39,623.
The second biggest item in the culture and recreation area of the budget is the pool, accounting for $260,300. The adopted budget calls for a $9,900 decrease from the current $270,200 budget.
Home and community costs, which cover sewer expenses and a refuse and garbage collection contract, will rise $22,000 from $583,000 to $605,000. This is primarily due to the garbage contract increasing $20,000 from $390,000 to $410,000.
Transportation-related items, which include street maintenance, snow removal, street lighting and off street parking, are expected to go down from $532,307 to $517,385, just shy of $15,000.
The village will also pay $427,766 toward debt, according to the adopted budget, which is $44,698 less than the $472,464 in the current budget.