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May 1, 2014

Trustees pass budget, prepare for induction crowds

The Cooperstown Board of Trustees unanimously approved the final 2014-2015 budget on Monday with minimal tinkering. 

The trustees kept revenues and expenses at the 2013-2014 levels, and although they had earlier voted to exceed the state property-tax cap – which is 1.4 percent for the village this year because of court consolidation – they did not raise property taxes.

The budget projects $370,000 in parking revenues in 2014, plus $25,000 in permits. For on-street paid parking, $170,000 is projected, while Doubleday Field projections increase to $200,000 thanks to an extended season and 40 percent rise in cost.

The village has also restored $10,000 to projections for sale taxes in July in anticipation of a big Induction Weekend. On Monday, Katz said he had sat in on some Baseball Hall of Fame planning meetings, and that he believes there will be a huge crowd that weekend.

“From everything I am hearing, we could see between 40 and 50,000 people that weekend,” Katz said. In anticipation, the trustees also voted to close Main Street on July 26, the Saturday before the induction, and to give police the option to close the street again on Sunday.

The trustees held one public hearing, although no members of the public were at the meeting. By a 7-0 vote, the trustees approved changes to parking laws to prohibit overnight parking in village-owned spaces behind the fire hall.

Two more public hearings were set for the May meeting, which will be held on Tuesday, May 27, rather than on Memorial Day. The trustees will consider changes to the zoning law and also talk about prohibiting parking on Beaver Street between Delaware and Eagle streets.

In other actions on Monday, the trustees approved the purchase of two used ambulances and a new jaws of life. The two 2009 ambulances will be bought from the village of Cazenovia for $45,000 each. The EMS and fire squads will pay $30,000 for the vehicles and the village will pay for the rest of the purchase. The village will use a broker, Adirondack Fire Company, to sell its current ambulances. The current vehicles, from 1999 and 2004, are on van chasses, while the new ones will be on truck chasses.

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