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Village of Morristown passes a $951,526 budget

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MORRISTOWN – The village board adopted a $951,526 budget for 2013-2014 at Tuesday’s meeting that includes the first tax rate increase in six years.

The budget, a 1.91 percent increase over last year’s spending plan, raises the tax rate from $11.31 per $1,000 of assessed value to $11.53 per thousand.

While last year’s budget increased the tax levy by $300, the village’s new spending plan includes a $9,800 jump, bringing the tax levy up to $293,800.

“We felt it was better to increase a little bit than to run short and then next year have to have a bigger increase,” Mayor Cheryl A. Shatraw said.

One of the factors that contributed to the village’s budget increase is employee raises.

“All of our people got raises,” Mrs. Shatraw said.

That includes Village Clerk and Tax Collector Sandra A. Warren and three department of public works employees.

“Each one of us received a $624 raise,” Mrs. Warren said, which amounts to 3 percent.

Neither Mrs. Shatraw nor the village’s two trustees received a raise this year.

The village’s general fund fell from $665,325 in 2012-2013 to $575,225 for 2013-2014, while state aid increased from $27,700 last year to $77,700 this year.

Both of these changes are the result of the culmination of the village’s boat launch renovation project, which came to $107,000.

The increase in state aid is the result of a $50,000 grant for the renovation project that arrived late.

Mrs. Warren said the project, which is slated to be finalized by the end of the month, allowed the village to lower its general fund spending.

The village did not apply any fund balance to the general fund.

Neither the village’s $273,273 sewer district budget nor its $103,028 water district budget will necessitate an increase in the rates.

Sewer rates will remain at $360 annually, billed quarterly at $90. Water rates will remain at $7.50 per 1,000 gallons.

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