St. Lawrence County's proposed 2023 budget puts tax rate at lowest since 1980s

Nov. 3—CANTON — The 2023 tentative budget released by the St. Lawrence County administrator's office projects a decrease in true-value tax rate below $8 per $1,000 of assessed valuation — the lowest it would be since the 1980s.

The tentative budget sees the rate decreasing from $8.02 in 2022 to $7.60.

That means if your property is assessed at $100,000, you'd be saving $41.79 in taxes.

County Administrator Ruth A. Doyle said that's one of the things she's most proud of about this budget. "We haven't been there since the '80s," she said.

Meanwhile, the property tax levy is projected to increase from $50,332,681 this year to $51,702,104 in 2023. Ms. Doyle explained that the true-value tax rate can decrease while property tax levy increases because the TVTR includes assessed valuation changes, and also because the increase in property tax levy was mitigated by recognizing other sources of revenue.

One of those revenue sources is sales tax revenue, which is projected to increase from $62.7 million this year to $71.6 million next year.

"We've seen an increase in sales tax revenue the last three years," Ms. Doyle said. This revenue is shared with the towns and villages.

Total revenue is projected to increase from $210 million to $221.9 million.

The tentative budget also remains under the state tax cap for 2023.

"We're not using the full tax cap, and we're continuing to provide the same level of services while providing a reduction in taxes," Ms. Doyle said.

"As we emerge from a two-year pandemic that challenged the delivery of services, we are poised to respond to the challenges ahead of us in a manner that has an impact while simultaneously lowering taxes," she said in a news release. "This $274M budget accomplishes that task."

Legislative chair William J. Sheridan, R-Hammond, lauded Ms. Doyle, her staff and department heads "for putting together, once again, a very well-crafted tentative budget proposal."

"Over the last 8 years, this group has steered this $274 million enterprise through the turbulent waters of government," Mr. Sheridan said.

The release says that the board will review the tentative budget beginning Nov. 14 during the Operations Committee meeting. The review will conclude with a public hearing and consideration for adoption on Dec. 5.