I am pleased to announce that I will be presenting a budget that does not raise taxes this year and our mill rate will remain the same at 31.18.
This budget also does not cut any services and actually enhances our service model to our residents. There are upgrades in our 911 emergency dispatching system, enhancements to our public safety departments, this budget fully supports education, this budget also makes 100 percent of our pension obligations, it upgrades some of our equipment in our public works department and this budget also reinvests back into Information Technology to continue to deliver quality services to our residents.
There are several reasons why we can continue to improve the town and not raise taxes and they are as follows:
1. Our town continues to maintain a AAA rated financial rating status which is considered to be the highest financial rating that a municipality can achieve. This allows us to do things like build a new middle school and renovate our outdated police department by bonding at the lowest interest rates possible.
2. North Haven continues to be highly under-leveraged from a debt burden standpoint.
3. We have had a great deal of success in growing our grand list through bringing in new businesses to North Haven. This year, our grand list has grown 2.8 percent, which has created over $2.3 million in incremental revenue for the town. Grand list growth is a critical part of the financial health of a municipality.
4. We carefully prepared, starting years ago, to anticipate the debt increase from renovating our fire houses, our new middle school, and soon-to-be unveiled new police department by creating a debt reserve fund through the dollars that we received from bond premiums that were paid from financial companies who were aggressively bidding on our municipal bonds because we are so highly rated.
As we move forward, we will continue to balance budgets, we will continue to achieve cost savings every fiscal year which may contribute to a surplus that will enhance our rainy day fund. I can also say with 100 percent certainty that we will continue to grow our grand list through bringing in new businesses, because I am personally involved with every economic development project in town.
I hope you will agree that to have no increase in taxes and to continue to improve the town by reinvesting in infrastructure upgrades, and growing the grand list every year, is a good position for a municipality to be in.
I hope that you will come out and support this budget at our town wide referendum on May 21. The future of North Haven is very bright!
is First Selectman
of North Haven.
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