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Rye Town Facing Budget Cuts, Major Staff Reductions

A press release from the Town of Rye.

Rye Town Supervisor Joe Carvin is presenting a 2013 Town Budget to deal with lower revenues and increased pension and health and welfare costs, and to stay under the New York State Tax Cap.

Part of the cost cuts will be staff reductions including three people in the Parks Department, two in the Assessor’s Office, one in the Receiver of Taxes’ Office, as well as two full time staffers who will become part time – one in the Town Clerk’s Office and one in the Town Court.

The 2013 budget also calls for an across-the-board salary freeze.
The budget will be voted on just weeks after the entire Town started reading and publicly discussing the New York State and Village/Town funded CGR Report on the proposed dissolution of the Town (see http://www.cgr.org/ryetown/).

In a message to his fellow Town Board Members, Mr. Carvin said: “It is important that we remember that on average non-tax revenues have fallen 25% from $3.5 million in the last 4 years of the prior regime to $2.6 million in our first four years. At the same time that non-tax revenues have been falling, employee benefit costs which are outside the control of the Town have increased materially.”

He explained that as the Town entered this budget season and looked ahead to next year and beyond, it quickly became clear the only way to continue to provide Town operations on a sustainable basis would be to make the difficult decision to reduce headcount.

“Fortunately, the Town has worked hard over the last several years to streamline operations. Over the course of the last couple of years the Town has automated operations, outsourced work flows, and reduced unnecessary costs. It is that kind of on-going restructuring that makes the Town confident it can continue to provide constituents with a high level of service with lower head count,” Mr. Carvin said.

Mr. Carvin also wrote the Board that he wanted to “make clear that this is a first step toward a further reduction in Town costs. I would like to pursue this further reduction in Town costs over the course of 2013 by implementing an outsourcing model akin to the one deployed in Sandy Springs, Georgia. That effort will require a full-on analysis of current work flows within the Town with a view to contracting out those work flows to the private sector.”

The Town Board will be discussing and voting on the proposed budget during their monthly meeting on Tuesday, December 18, at 7:30PM in the Rye Town Hall’s meeting room on the 3rd floor.

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