Town of Red Hook budgeting $25K raise for supervisor
Mid-Hudson News reports that the town of Red Hook's proposed 2023 budget lowers the tax rate by 17 percent, in an attempt to offset an increase in residential assessment rates, but the preliminary spending plan also includes a $25,000 raise for the town supervisor. Town Supervisor Robert McKeon’s budget memo stated that financial experts are warning of a recession in the near future while noting, “This budget includes additional increases for those staff not included in the collective bargaining agreement,” referencing the contract between the Dutchess County town and its union employees. At an October 13 town board workshop not attended by McKeon, Deputy Town Supervisor Bill Hamel discussed the increased workload and numerous responsibilities associated with the office of town supervisor. According to the minutes, board members talked about adjusting the position to full time with an increase in salary and the addition of benefits or a buy-out option for the supervisor. They used the towns of East Fishkill and Lagrange as comparisons for the increase in salary. The four board members in attendance suggested that increasing the salary could encourage future supervisors to take the position on as a regular job if it was full time. The board then voted unanimously to increase the supervisor's salary, from the current $32,575 to $58,466 per year. The town clerk is scheduled to receive an increase of just under $1,800 next year. McKeon said the increases are an attempt to attract and retain valuable employees. The supervisor, now serving his second term, said, “The [town] budget is the seventh in a row with flat or lower taxes. The tax rate for the three main funds combined is proposed to be down 17 percent to $1.81 per $1,000 of assessed value,” and noted that it is among the lowest in the county. “In addition to holding the line, we’ve adopted programs, including our Community Solar, which is currently saving residents hundreds of dollars annually.” The board will hold a public hearing on the 2023 budget on Nov. 2 at town hall. Read the full story at MidHudsonNews [dot] com.