By Jim Krencik
Medina Journal-Register — RIDGEWAY — Town Supervisor Brian Napoli said Ridgeway has kept its local costs in line this year, but an increase in the town’s tax rate is in the offing as the 2013 budget comes due.
Ridgeway’s $2.3 million 2013 spending plan will be the subject of public hearing at the board’s 7 p.m. Tuesday workshop meeting. According to the preliminary numbers, tax rate for residents of the northern half of the Village of Medina will rise to $3.10 from $3.01; town residents would see an increase to $4.89 to $4.01 for every $1,000 in assessed property values.
Napoli said the major costs come from health care and retirement.
Ridgeway is shopping for what would be the town’s third insurance plan in three years, as each successive year brings news that the current plan for town employees isn’t available. He said a plan offered by Blue Cross Blue Shield appears to be the best option for next year.
“It will cost more, but it’s the best plan our money,” Napoli explained.
Taxes will also rise due to an $295,000 reduction in property values. In the preliminary budget, Ridgeway will collect $1.3 million in taxes
According to Napoli, no new capital purchases have been okayed for 2013, although reserve funding is budgeted for the event of a major equipment breakdown. Salaries for board members have remained at the 2009 levels, although town employees will receive a two percent increase after a salary freeze last year.
The town board is scheduled to adopt the 2013 spending plan on Nov. 19 following a public hearing on a local law to override the state’s property tax levy limit legislation for 2013. Napoli said the move is a precautionary one.
“Technically, we don’t need to override, but our attorney and groups like the New York State Association of Towns are telling us to override,” Napoli said. “I’ve already filled out the form (stating) our intent to override.”
Ridgeway will be the last of the three towns in western Orleans County to complete the budget process. Both Shelby, which will vote on its budget Tuesday; and Yates, which will vote on Thursday, held quiet, brief public hearings on their spending plans last week. Towns have until Nov. 20 to submit their budgets.