The Town of Colonie budget is in a dangerous position as we enter a new decade.
During 2018 and 2019, the Colonie town government increased its budget by more than 4 percent yearly. The 2020 budget which amounts to $99.5 million could have been set at $95 million if Colonie had kept its spending at the inflation rate level of approximate 2 percent for the budgets passed in 2018 and 2019. This means that the current budget is overstated by about $4 million. This money will always be in the Colonie budget every year for the next 10 years. The result is that unless something changes, taxpayers will have to pay $40 million in unnecessary taxes and fees over the next 10 years.
Jim Franco produced a nice analysis in the Dec. 11, 2019 edition of the Spotlight which illustrated that Albany County reduced it tax rate yearly from 2014 to 2020 because of the good economy in the local area. These tax reductions are the correct policy to implement when the economy is good. This gives Albany County the flexibility to increase taxes if necessary when there is an economic downturn. Unfortunately the Town of Colonie increased taxes when the economy was good. We can expect sharp tax increases during the next economic downturn. This is simply poor management by the Town of Colonie.
Kevin Bronner, Sr.