The discussions on the 2019 budget were spirited at times, but civil, as Mayor Ellen Polimeni noted.
Those discussions proved fruitful, as members of City Council voted unanimously Thursday night to adopt a $15,322,791 spending plan for 2019.
Councilmember Jim Terwilliger said this was one of the more difficult processes he has seen, with an array of differences of opinion on what should and should not be included in the budget.
“This is really democracy in action,” Terwilliger said. “I think we coalesced quite well.”
The budget, which calls for a 6 percent increase in spending over the current year, has a $5,232,188 tax levy, which is 3.63 percent over the current tax levy of $5,048,800. The tax rate also will increase to $7.09 per $1,000 of assessed value, which is a 2.4 percent increase.
That means the tax bill for the average city home, assessed at $166,000, will have a $27.63 increase, from $1,149.78 this year to $1,177.42 next year.
The budget includes the city’s half of the bill for two new firefighters, which is the beginning of a multi-year plan to increase paid staffing at the Canandaigua Fire Department, and $25,000 in funding for a third firefighter, who eventually will replace a firefighter scheduled to retire in April.
Councilmember Bob Palumbo, who has pushed for more staffing, said this budget has made headway into providing appropriate staffing for the department.
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