ITHACA, N.Y. (WENY) -- The tax levy for Tompkins County may be going up next year, but the tax rate has decreased. Officials presented the proposed 2019 budget Tuesday night, which calls for a modest spending growth.
County Administrator Jason Molino presented his proposed $186.5 million budget during a legislative meeting. One recommendation is that the county's solid waste annual fee increases from $55 to $58.
The property tax levy increase is 1.43%. For an average owner of a median-valued $185,000 home, that will translate to an increase by $15.40. However, the tax rate is down by 2.76%.
"The tax rate is down, partially and primarily because of the growth in tax base, so Tompkins County has experienced a solid tax base growth over the last several years, so the small levy increase, and the large growth, or robust growth in tax base has decreased the tax rate," Molino says.
Local dollar spending is slated for $89.9 million, which is an increase of 2.05%.
"Increase in spending has to do with several different initiatives. Some has to do with Raise the Age initiatives, some has to just do with general increase and maintenance of effort with the budget," Molino explains.
This is the first look for legislators of the 2019 proposed budget, which is expected to change.
"They'll have about 7 or 8 budget meetings following this over the course of the next few weeks to deliberate it," Molino says.
Legislators will review the recommended budget in detail at the first meeting of the County’s Expanded Budget Committee (where any legislator may participate) on Thursday, September 6, 5:30 p.m. in Legislature Chambers, located at 121 E. Court Street (Second Floor).
COPY OF 2019 PROPOSED BUDGET BELOW: