The Town of Mansfield’s proposed budget for the 2018/19 fiscal year includes a 0.1 percent increase of roughly $67,000 from the previous fiscal year, no cuts to programs or services and an increase to taxes, Mansfield Interim Town Manager John Carrington said.
The 0.1 percent increase includes the proposed budget from the Mansfield Board of Education, which will have no change from the 2017/18 fiscal year, according to a March 26 letter Carrington wrote to the Mansfield Town Council.
You can read the entirety of the budget here.
Carrington said in an email that he feels the most positive aspect of the proposed budget is that it would allow the town to continue offering all current services and programs.
“(There will be) no reduction in programs or services with (the) very small proposed increase in the current budget,” Carrington said.
Carrington said he believes the most negative part of the proposed budget is an increase in taxes residents would see “without increase(d) services.”
“(The most negative aspect is) an increase in taxes without increase(d) services and reducing some capital expenditures which defers improvements (to the town) to future years,” Carrington said.
The tax increase comes to citizens of Mansfield in the form of the mill rate, according to the proposed budget. A mill rate is equal to $1 of tax for each $1,000 worth of investment, according to the State of Connecticut Office of Policy and Management website. (view.asp)
According to the proposed budget, the current mill rate of 30.63 would increase to 32.37, a 5.68 percent increase.
According to Carrington’s March 26 letter to the Mansfield Town Council, Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy reduced municipal aid since the last fiscal year by a total of $52.6 million, a 1.7 percent decrease. Carrington said Mansfield had to incorporate $3 million into the proposed budget that they would have received through state funding in past years.
Carrington reiterated that despite the reductions in municipal aid, the town, the Mansfield Board of Education and the Region 19 Board of Education were all able to put forth budgets without cutting services or programs.
“The staff and I, as well as the [two] Boards of Education (Mansfield BOE and Region 19 BOE), have proposed level budgets without cutting services or programs but due to the lack of traditional State revenue ($3 million over two years) taxes must increase,” Carrington said.
Carrington said that due to the demanding 2017/18 winter for Mansfield Public Works, there are changes for next year’s snow removal budget in the proposed budget.
Earlier this year, Mansfield was notified by the State of Connecticut that the town’s Town Aid Road (TAR) grant would be decreased by $208,000, Carrington said. He added that as a result of this decrease, Mansfield is roughly $280,000 over budget for snow removal for the 2017/18 fiscal year.
For the 2018/19 fiscal year, the proposed budget predicts 600 less tons of salt applied to roads as compared to the 2017/18 fiscal year.
“The Town Council still has to adopt the budget and it appears it will be at a number less than I proposed,” Carrington said. “On May 8 the Annual Town Meeting will vote on the budget.”
Luke Hajdasz is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.