By ANDY GARDNER
MASSENA -- After two budget work sessions, the Massena village board has pared down its proposed budget to a tax levy increase of 8.6 percent.
The original mayor's budget called for a 9.7-percent hike.
At a 100-percent equalization rate, the owner of a home assessed at $50,000 would pay $777 in taxes, the owner of a home assessed at $100,000 would pay $1,554.
Village Treasurer Julie Sharlow said they cut $50,159 from the street instruction fund, meaning they will spend $235,000 to rebuild streets and roads. It is separate from the street maintenance fund, which is from where money is taken to fix potholes. That area's funding has not changed, remaining at $85,000.
They also slashed $8,311 from the parks fund.
The D.A.R.E. program will still receive $4,000 per year, but it will be funded by asset forfeiture rather than as a line item in the budget.
"We don't have to take it out of the general fund," Mayor James Hidy said Thursday.
The board restored $400 to the Association of Senior Citizens.
Hidy said they gave the money back because they don't usually spend their maximum annual allowance.
The board will meet tonight at 5 p.m. to continue budget talks. They may vote to approve a spending plan as early as April 22.