Westhampton Free Library Taxes Could Increase Slightly Next Year

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Taxpayers in the Westhampton Beach School District could see their library taxes increase by a few dollars next year if the library’s $2.7 million budget is approved on Tuesday, May 20.

Overall spending will increase by about 2.9 percent, or just over $77,000, from this year’s $2.6 million budget for the Westhampton Free Library. The new plan comes with an estimated tax levy of $2.1 million, which is just $12,177 higher than the current year’s levy, according to the budget proposal.

As a result, the tax rate for the library district is projected to increase from almost 48 cents per $1,000 of assessed value to a little more than 49 cents per $1,000. As a result, a homeowner whose property is assessed at $500,000 can expect to see their library taxes increase about 3.2 percent, from $238.50 this year to $246.15 next year.

The biggest increase falls under the building maintenance portion of the proposed spending plan, which is set to increase from $105,423 this year to $117,188 next year, a 11.2 percent jump. Additionally, employee-related expenses, such as salaries and benefits, are set to increase from $1,411,881 this year to $1,487,793 next year, a 5.4 percent hike.

Danielle Zubiller, the library’s director, said the maintenance budget is increasing because she wants to be prepared in case there’s another high snowfall total next winter. She also said employee salaries and benefits are fixed expenses that are beyond her control.

The spending plan for the upcoming year also includes reductions in areas like the systems budget, which includes hardware, software and tech support. That budget line is set to go down by almost 18 percent, from $59,250 this year to $48,750 next year.

Westhampton Beach School District residents will be able to vote on the library budget from 7 a.m. until 9 p.m. on Tuesday, May 20, in the Westhampton Beach High School large group instruction room behind the auditorium. It will be the second proposition on the ballot.

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