Small Tax Increase in New Binghamton Budget
Homeowners in the City of Binghamton are looking at about a 0.4% increase in property taxes while businesses are proposed to have a hike of 1.1% under the 2014 budget presented to city council by Mayor Matthew Ryan.
The $88.6 million budget increases spending by almost 4%, calls for more money to be spent on road and other infrastructure work and the hiring of three additional police officers. The plan also proposes spending $55,000 on a shooting range simulator that the mayor says will help train police officers and cut ammunition costs over time.
Critics say the minuscule tax increase is unrealistic and, if approved, budgets in following years would have to carry large tax increases to make up for the revenue short-fall.
City council will review the proposal through October before submitting a revised plan. The mayor has line-item veto power and could possibly vote down individual changes.
The final budget is due in November.
This is the last budget proposal for Ryan who, due to term limits, could not seek reelection.
The budget address can be seen at the city's official website, www.cityofbinghamton.com.