It’s budget time again in Roslyn and East Hills, the area’s largest village, continues to set the pace.
Recently, the Village of East Hills Board of Trustees approved a $13,680,527 budget that marks the 13th year in a row that the village has delivered a budget that does not include a tax increase, something that Mayor Michael R. Koblenz calls “unprecedented” and “no doubt” sets a record for among the village’s surrounding municipalities.
The 2023-2024 budget follows predictable lines. The bulk of spending came from Government Support ($2,608,223), Public Safety ($2,603,000), and Employee Benefits ($2,950,369).
On the revenue side, up to $9 million is being raised by Real Property taxes. Other sources of revenue came from Licenses & Permits ($689,750), State Aid ($451,207), and Non-Property Tax Items ($334,325).
The mayor broke down the budget priorities, while thanking his fellow trustees for their continuing vigilance. And while Nassau County and the rest of New York State continues to lose people at an alarming rate, the mayor sees a bright future for East Hills.
“East Hills continues to be one of the most sought-after communities on Long Island,” the mayor claimed. “Our offspring and the next generation of children continue to move back into our community. It should be stressed that village taxes generally amount to only 16-17 percent of all taxes paid by our residents. Yet, even with our rather limited portion of all taxes paid, we shoulder the entire costs of sanitation, snow removal, paving our roads, security, the pool, the park, fees for Nassau County Police, administration for our programs and fire protection.”
The mayor also touted the usual service that village residents have grown accustomed to, including sanitation, security, road re-pavement, snow removal, beautification, tree trimming and replacement, administration of the Justice Court for traffic and code violations, creation of new legislation on zoning, building and administration of our village services, laws, regulations and services.
Other funding supplements the village’s crown jewel, The Park at East Hills. That includes tennis facilities, basketball courts, pickle ball courts, community lounge, swimming pool, Park Grille, Snow Mountain, nature trails, Dog Park, walking, jogging and biking paths, and sports playgrounds, plus such programs as the Fire Works Extravaganza, the Roslyn Little League and Challengers, Albertson Soccer League Challengers, Women’s Softball, Young Children’s Flag Football and outdoor concerts.
Another addition is the East Hills Social Committee which the mayor said will be featuring lecturers, painting and a new book club.
The end of the COVID crisis means the resumption of the New Residents’ Days, one that welcomes new residents through brunches that provide information, facts and an introduction to village services.
“We will continue to provide regularly ‘Messages from the Mayor’ which contain important information for the residents through emails,” Koblenz added. “The messages also inform our residents of various weather concerns, and contain important information provided by the Nassau County Police Department relating to safety issues.”
On the safety front, the village will add Security Entrance Cameras to the budget.
“Safety remains our number one
priority and the budget provides the means to achieve these important
objectives,” the mayor added. “For
the past couple of years, almost all
incidences have involved unlocked cars with key fobs left in the vehicles. Our residents must stay alert and take the keys to their cars, leave the lights on at night, and call 911
if they see any suspicious activity.”
Road repaving projects are also part of the budget, plus the popular Instant Access Program, that includes “Meetings with the Mayor” on weekends, one designed to give added open access with face-to-face meetings with the mayor to discuss issues, ideas, and suggestions.
The budget will continue to “fully fund” the volunteer firefighters program, beautification programs and other environmental programs as the annual Green Day, which encourages recycling, buying fuel-efficient vehicles, separating residents’ disposable items, and collecting these disposables.
“With our fiscal condition strong, our Village continues to be a trend-setter, and East Hills highly desirable, we will, through this zero percent increase in taxes, preserve the finest services, programs, events and facilities for East Hills,” the mayor concluded. “At the same time, we will protect the safety and well-being of our residents through our Security Department and our camera system. Through this budget and the close cooperation of the Board, we have implemented – for the Thirteenth Year in a Row – a zero increase in taxes in East Hills. It is an accomplishment we are proud of achieving. This is a challenge that was met head-on, even with necessary repairs and enhancements to the Park, equipment, rising health care costs, added fire and police protection costs, and increased compensation for our employees.”