Yearly Update – January 2016
Caledonia Supervisor, Dan Pangrazio
Another year has passed by very quickly and we are now starting a new year. The Town of Caledonia had a very busy year in 2015 and as we start focusing on 2016 it shapes up to be another hectic year for us. Reflecting back on what was accomplished, and looking ahead to challenges in 2016, it’s time to share what has transpired and what is on our radar screen for 2016.
Before I get started, I want to remind you that we heat our Town Barn with waste oil such as motor oil, which saves the taxpayers money. Currently we have a shortage of this oil and would appreciate whatever you have to help out our heating needs.
The Highway Department accomplished quite a bit in 2015. The year started out with lots of cold and snow which meant our Highway Department spent lots of time out in the trucks snow plowing and keeping the roads clear. When spring rolled around they were off and running on the spring work that needed to be accomplished. The Highway Crew started preparing roads for stone oil, paving, ditching and cutting shoulders. Besides road work, they also trimmed trees on various roads throughout the Town.
The Highway Department completed road work on McIntyre, Sand Hill, Feeley, Cold Springs, Skelly, McCorkindale, Lacey, Quarry Roads and Black Street. After receiving FEMA funding, the Highway Department started doing mitigation work on Sand Hill and McCorkindale to ward off future problems. On top of the road work that was completed, they straightened road signs throughout the Town, and as always, mowing the sides of the road is a continual job during the summer. In the fall the Highway crew worked on an addition to the Recycle Barn, paved in front of the Town Barn and prepared for the 2016 winter. The crew also worked with the Village DPW and Livingston County Highway Department to assist them in getting their projects completed. We are now ready for Old Man Winter with a full barn of salt. Let’s hope he isn’t as cold as last year! The Board and I are very proud of our Highway Department’s accomplishments.
We completed a few necessary updates at the Town Hall in 2015. We had to replace our boiler system. The old boiler system continually had problems heating the hall and from time to time stopped working. The Board and I decided at the end of 2014 chasing good money after a bad situation wasn’t prudent. Chimney blocks were repaired; we closed off a chimney flue, and repaired roof valleys with new membrane. We also pointed up cellar walls with mortar and painted them with water proofing paint.
The 2016 Budget was adopted at the November Town Board meeting. We had an increase in the rate per thousand by 22 cents for the General portion (Village & Town) and the tax rate (Town Outside). That 22 per thousand would equate to an increase of $22 if your house was assessed for $100,000. We passed a Local Law to go over the property tax cap. The tax cap guidelines set by the State for 2016 was .7%. Our General Fund had lost revenues, Health Care had increase of 16%, and the cost of salt was up $10 a ton. These challenges of uncontrollable costs continue to have a huge impact on year to year budgeting. We will continue to manage these uncontrollable costs the best we can, but it will definitely be very challenging year to year. We have no Town-wide debt and we continue to pay as we go, which is something we are very proud of. Moving forward, we will continue with sound financial practices while providing high quality services to the Town residents. Our budget is responsible, practical and a budget that funds all existing services and Highway projects that residents expect from their Town Government.
Accomplishments for 2015
All planned road repairs were completed
Recycle Barn addition completed
Finished the balance of the Town Hall basement wall repairs and painted
Completed mitigation worked on two roads
Looking Ahead for 2016
The Highway Crew will work on stone & oil and paving, wedging and brush clean up plans for 2016 season.
Mitigation work on McIntyre Road
Fund equipment replacement strategy
The Board and I will continue to monitor our 2016 financial performance to meet our year end goals.
Protect fiscal stability
Create a capital improvement plan for buildings
Town plowing routes take 3 hrs 15 minutes each
New County E911 tower being erected on Lacey Road
Tax cap is .7% not 2%
I would like to extend my warmest wishes for a happy and healthy New Year.