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Posted on: September 29, 2022

Despite Inflation, CPI Increases Brookhaven 2023 Budget Holds the Line on Taxes

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Farmingville, NY – – - Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine today presented the Town Board with his 2023 Tentative Budget. Despite significant inflation over the past year and a rising Consumer Price Index, the budget holds the line on taxes below the tax cap and reduces outstanding debt by more than 36 percent. The 2023 Tentative Operating Budget fully funds all constituent services, provides for escalating price increases in commodities, is conservative in its revenue projections, and preserves Fund Balance levels in the major Tax Districts through structural balance, while complying with New York State and Town of Brookhaven Tax Levy, Tax Rate, and Debt Caps. Because of the steps taken within this budget, the Town is confident that our AAA credit rating with Wall Street bond rating services will be reaffirmed.

Brookhaven continues to operate with a minimal impact on residents’ property taxes, accounting for only 5.75 cents of every tax dollar local residents pay in property taxes. The 2023 Tentative Operating Budget complies with the New York State Property Tax Levy Cap for fiscal year 2023, as well as the Town’s Tax Rate and Debt Management Cap for the General Fund.

2023 Tentative Operating Budget Summary Highlights
•Comes in below the New York State 2% Tax Cap
•Complies with the Town's Tax Rate and Debt Management Caps
•Provides financial flexibility in revenue estimates to withstand a recession
•Increases the snow removal budget by $232,182
•Holds garbage costs for a single home below $385
•Increases the Landfill Post-Closure Reserve by $1.2 million to an $24.6 million
•Provides for an increase in contractual spending of 6.3%, which is consistent with the Town’s Regional CPI

Public Improvement Projects within the 2023 Tentative Budget include:
•$21.1 million for roads, storm water and drainage improvements, traffic safety, street lighting, machinery and equipment
•$8.8 million in landfill capping, infrastructure improvements and machinery/equipment
•$5 million for open space preservation and land acquisition for drainage
•$2.8 million for park and recreation facilities, and equipment
•$2 million for Planning & Environmental
•$1 million for other improvements, including vehicles, facilities, public safety, IT
•$ 4.2 million to sewer improvements,
•$ 3.3 million for drinking water improvements,

Fiscal year 2022 has presented many unexpected challenges as commodity prices have escalated and most vendors have declined to renew their contracts. New York’s 2022 inflation rate is 6.3 percent. However, fuel and utility costs have increased far beyond the 2022 budgeted levels. Despite this, the 2023 Tentative Budget maintains all Town services and increases staffing to meet the needs of our residents.

The 2023 Tentative Budget also includes provisions successfully negotiated in the 2022 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) with its White Collar union. Favorable terms were negotiated with respect to the hours worked per day, workers compensation entitlements, and hourly rates, all benefitting the Brookhaven Taxpayers for years to come. The terms of the White Collar and Highway CBA’s also position the Town well to withstand a recession in 2023 and/or 2024.

The Town’s Landfill in Yaphank remains on track to close its Construction & Debris operation at the end of fiscal year 2024. The Town has established a post closure monitoring Reserve that is expected to total approximately $23.4 million at the end of 2022. The Town Board approved a $4.0 million Capping project in 2022, and another $4.0 million Capping project in 2023, representing an additional 25 acres to the existing 140 acres capped.

Because of the steps taken in this budget, the Town is confident that our AAA credit rating with Standard & Poor’s Financial Services and Moody’s Investor Services will be re-affirmed when we return to the market, as the financial condition of Town is stronger than it was at the time of our last credit rating, and total outstanding bond debt is down.

Use this link to access the budget documents. 2023 Tentative Budget

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