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Hudson treasurer briefs officials on revenue projections

May 22, 2020 12:45 pm
Abby Hoover is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media Hudson City Treasurer Heather Campbell May 19, provided the Finance Committee of the Hudson Common Council a year-to-date comparison of city revenue for the first four months of 2019 and 2020. The city recorded a 33 percent drop in parking revenues since this time last year. Earlier this year, the Common Council voted to raise the meter rate on Warren Street from 25 cents to 50 cents per hour. Mayor Kamal Johnson March 18, suspended parking fees citywide, except at the meters in the Front Street municipal lot. The city will resume collecting parking fees citywide June 1. While there has been a 43 percent decline in building and plumbing permits, Common Council President Thomas DePietro said permits are on hold, so there may be a buildup of applications that would bring in closer to normal revenue when the process resumes. Campbell outlined two non-property tax budget estimates for the rest of the year. In a low-impact scenario, the city’s losses are estimated between 10 percent and 15 percent; under the high-impact projections, loss of revenue is estimated between 16 percent and 23 percent. Campbell's report included charts outlining revenues for parking, lodging taxes, building and plumbing permits and sales tax. And she characterized the quarterly sales-tax revenue projections recently distributed by Columbia County Treasurer P.J. Keeler as optimistic. Even without a pandemic, there is strain on the city’s finances, she said. The city’s unassigned fund balance fell by more than $436,000 between 2018 to 2019. “That’s obviously not great, wouldn’t be great if we were going into a normal year, but especially not great now going into the coronavirus world of finance,” Campbell said. Johnson has asked department heads to cut their budgets by 5 and 10 percent. NOTE: Johnson and DePietro are WGXC volunteer programmers. Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.