Mayor Mark A. Lauretti proposed a $113.4 million budget for fiscal year 2013 that would increase 's mill rate, decrease residents' taxes, and cut half a million dollars from the 's budget.
During his presentation to the Board of Apportionment & Taxation Wednesday night, Lauretti said this budget "reflects spending levels that are less than 1 percent more than last year."
This year, all city properties were re-evaluated, and Lauretti said that "while residential property values have dropped, the commercial and industrial properties have held in value. As a result, most home owners (95%) will see a reduction in overall taxes."
Lauretti said the city's Grand List dropped an average of 16 percent, but "going forward Shelton will remain economically stable."
In contrast, the mill rate will rise to 21.85 mills from 18.57.
As for education, the BOE approved a budget draft late last year, of which Lauretti allocated $500,000 less than their requested amount.
Lauretti admitted that he has often been critical of the BOE's financial management, particularly with pay-to-play sports fees, which he appropriated $285,000 for the elimination of "when and only when the BOE rescinds this program."
"One must question its [pay-to-play] validity considering the BOE finished the school year with an $850,000 budget surplus," he said.
- Multiple Planning & Zoning projects will yield increased tax revenue:
- Canal Street reconstruction
- Conclusion of the Riverwalk
- City will invest in:
- Road reconstruction
- Purchase of fire and police vehicles
- Employment levels are expected to remain constant
- A program designed to decrease recycling spending will soon be announced
Editor's note: Video of the presentation will be uploaded shortly. Patch is currently experiencing some technical glitches.