Yates County spending up but tax rate down

Yates County Legislators will present the 2018 tentative budget at a 7 p.m. public hearing Nov.16 in the legislative chambers of the county office building.

The budget, which was the subject of a day and a half long workshop, calls for total spending of over $42.8 million, up just over 3 percent, a local property tax levy of $16.2 million, which is about $198,000 less than what had been proposed by Budget Officer Winona Flynn, and a tax rate of $6.46, a cut of just over 1 percent.

The tentative plan was adopted by a 12-2 vote with District 1 Legislator Elden Morrison and District 3 Legislator Mark Morris casting no votes.

Morris explained his vote in an email message, praising Budget Officer Nonie Flynn and the department managers, but said his “no” was based on the growth in fund balances over the past four years and the cost of public safety.

The county maintains several reserve funds totaling nearly $19.5 million, and the public safety portion of the budget accounts for more than 22 percent of the county’s spending.

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