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January 2019

Left to right: Councilmen/Trustees Frank Gordon; Stephen Malfitano.

2019 Budget Passed and New “Sewer Rents” System Introduced at Board Meeting

By Stephen E. Lipken


James Nytko, Vice President, Capital Markets Advisors, LLC, Hopewell Junction, NY appeared at the Thursday, December 6th Harrison Town/Village Board meeting, commissioned by the Town to assist in establishing a sewer rent fee; Proposed Local Law Amending Chapter 228, adding Article II, “Sewer Rents.”


“Article 14-F of the General Municipal Law, otherwise known as the ‘Sewer Rents Law,’ authorizes the imposition of sewer rents as a means of raising funds to operate, maintain and repair a municipal sanitary sewer system…”


Nytko said that an equitable water rate structure should be predicated on usage, billed during  the non-irrigating months, January through May.  The total of 2019 Applicable Sewer District Costs, $1,196,894, divided by Adjusted Water Sales of $1,032,074,667 is 0.0011596 per gallon/year.  “For the average residential consumer using 114,000 gallons of water each year the estimated annual sewer rent would be $132.19 or $11.02 per month.”


Resident Robert Porto raised questions.  Mayor Ron Belmont replied that Moody’s gave Harrison a “AAA” Rating.


Trustee/Councilman Fred Sciliano countered that DPW was doing a “yeoman’s job” repairing the roads. Mayor Ron Belmont added that Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and “Save the Sound” mandated the Town to clean and repair their 100+-year old sewer system and borrow $5,000,000 to film and study the 27-square miles of sewer pipes.


Trustee/Councilman Stephen Malfitano explained that the Town was not creating an additional tax levy but substituting the current sewer tax for a sewer rental fee based on consumption. The Sewer Rent Local Law was unanimously approved by Roll-Call Vote.


Treasurer Maureen MacKenzie reported that the Real Property Assessed Valuations decreased from $130,327,405 in 2018 to $130,323,905 for 2019, by $3,500.  Tax Levy Rate increased by 2.941%, under the Tax Cap by $200,000.


A Roll Call Vote approved the Budget.