The estimated tax levy increase, at 2.76 percent, stays under the state-set limit, requiring only a simple majority to pass the budget on May 16.

Guilderland school district residents vote at the elementary school that serves their area. For the May 2022 budget vote, those in the Altamont area had the highest turnout at just 26 percent of eligible voters, followed by Pine Bush at 20 percent, Lynnwood at 19 percent, Guilderland at 17 percent, and Westmere at 14 percent.

Robert Marriott, Berne

Crossgates’ tenants in 2020 reported total sales of $266.5 million, down from  $416.8 million in 2019, according to court papers — dueling appraisals of the mall from the town and Crossgates. 

So far, the Guilderland school district has spent about $1.6 million out of the roughly $7.8 million it has been allocated in federal funds to deal with the pandemic.

Although the Helderberg Lake Dam, in Berne, had cracks and other deficiencies over the decades that it had undergone inspections by the New York State Department of Conservation, it was not considered to be out of state compliance until 2016, because of a lack of an engineering assessment due two years prior, and again in 2018, following an engineering assessment.

The Berne Town Board appeared highly critical of the tax district proposal at its meeting last month, suggesting alternative solutions to fund the unsound Helderberg Lake Dam.

The Altamont Board of Trustees will hold a public hearing on next year’s budget on April 5, at 7 p.m., at Village Hall, with adoption likely taking place during the village’s annual reorganizational meeting, also on Tuesday. 

The Berne-Knox-Westerlo Board of Education accepted Superintendent Timothy Mundell’s proposed budget in a unanimous vote, along with the district’s annual bus proposition and the proposed purchase of 1772 Helderberg Trail. All three items — plus school board elections — will be subject to a district vote on May 17.

Superintendent Marie Wiles, in answering questions from the board and the public about her draft budget on March 15, said that the nearly 5-percent spending increase and the nearly 3-percent tax increase “are the highest they've been in my time here” as she stressed the importance of “balance” in not overburdening taxpayers.


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