CITY MAYOR DELIVERS BALANCED BUDGET
2023 TO FOCUS ON INFRASTRUCTURE INVESTMENTS, CONTINUED PARKS AND GREEN SPACE RENOVATION, AND OPERATIONAL EFFICIENCIES
In his second budget, Mayor Rosenquest is scheduled to release a structurally balanced budget with a rate decrease while staying under the mandated tax cap.
“When the departmental budget requests came in, my office was looking to bridge a $2m deficit. Over the last several weeks I’ve worked very closely with the City Chamberlain and each department head to do a line-by-line review of this budget. What we’ve been able to come up with is something our residents, the Common Council, and our Department Heads should be proud of. Everyone was asked to compromise.”
Even with inflation on the rise, the 2023 Mayor’s PROPOSED budget shows a general fund expenditure increase of just 1.6% (or $410k) with revenues increasing by 4.98% (or $1.2m).
“There are a number of issues that we’re still trying to clean-up in the second year of this administration as well as plan and grow for the future. Last year we settled the ASFCME contract and this year alone my office settled two additional agreements: IBEW and Police. We’re also on track to settle a third,” Rosenquest said. “The Police contract hadn’t been settled since 2016 and settling it required retroactive pay and regular pay increases. The entire cost to the City was roughly $950k,” explained Rosenquest. Considering those unexpected expenditures, it’s anticipated that 2022 will end with a general fund deficit of just 1% or $242k.
FOCUS ON 2023
The Margaret Street project will be one of the most visible and important projects the City takes on over the course of the next two years. Faced with infrastructure as old as the City itself, many members of the community have demanded to see improvements to our downtown to improve walkability and attractiveness.
PARKS AND RECREATION
As the City saw in 2022, the renovation and reinvigoration of our parks is essential to our community pride and quality of life. The Parks Renewal Project is underway and will come to fruition over the course of 2023 and 2024.
Beach investments remain a priority for the City of Plattsburgh. As with many of our facilities, the former City Recreation Center continues to be a financial liability for the City and a holdover from defunded and shuttered departments. The sale of this property should go towards capital improvements at the beach and other parks and green spaces.
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND HOUSING
With the near completion of the Comprehensive Master Plan, the soon to be completed Harborside Master Plan, and the commencement of the implementation of the Waterfront Feasibility Study, the City is progressing forward with a focus on growth and development.
Housing issues remain an issue within the City of Plattsburgh and throughout the region. Along with a Zoning Code/Land Use Planning code rewrite planned for 2023, the City is also exploring the implementation of a comprehensive housing development and protection policy that will leverage several state tools, local development partnerships, rewriting of the zoning code, and further educational and informational opportunities for housing providers and renters.
BUDGET AT A GLANCE
The 2023 Mayor’s PROPOSED budget:
- $411k or 1.6% increase (over 2022) to General Fund expenditures
- $1.2m or 5.9% increase (over 2022) to General Fund revenues
- Structurally balanced 2023 General Fund budget
- Anticipated tax rate decrease to a mill rate of $10.86 (down from $11.37)
- Anticipated increase to the levy of $237k
- Budget delivered holding to the State’s 2023 calculated mandated tax cap rate of 2.04%.
Anticipated year ending General Fund Balance of $6.2m (24% of GF Expenditures)
This budget projects a 2022 year-end unassigned unappropriated fund balance of just over $6m. A 2016 Council resolution mandates the general fund balance be maintained at 10% of the City’s annual expenses. A general fund balance of $6m represents 24% of general fund expenses.
The Mayor’s 2023 Proposed Budget is available here.