Penfield adopts final town budget for 2021

Messenger Post Media
Monroe County Post

Penfield Supervisor Tony LaFountain and the Town Board adopted the 2021 final budget of $20,632,799, including special districts, a decrease of $38,593. 

The operating budget without special districts is $17,768,407. The town share of the tax levy increased $20,377 and is below the tax cap by $475,000.

The tax rate for 2021 will be the same as 2020 at $2.78 per $1,000 of assessed property value. Town taxes account for approximately 8 cents of every dollar; county taxes are 24 cents and the school taxes are 68 cents. The average tax bill for Penfield governmental services in 2021 will be $569.90 per household. This represents a house valued at $205,000.

Expenditures not under the town’s control continued to increase, including health insurance premiums and continued contributions to the state retirement system of approximately 11% to 22% of payroll. The cost of workers compensation will remain flat at nearly 6% of payroll.

”The budget for 2021 has presented several challenges for every community as we work through the effects of the pandemic and the financial impacts it has presented in 2020 that will continue well into 2021,” LaFountain said. “With the loss in revenue from sales tax, recreation programs and county projects, the Town Board wanted to make sure we were not overburdening our residents who were also impacted by COVID-19. Therefore, the 2021 budget has no tax increase. The efforts of our staff and board to tighten the belt on spending will continue our long history of very sound spending, even in difficult times.”  

Penfield’s growth rate was just over 1% in 2020, resulting in a positive impact of actual new “bricks and mortar” properties and therefore more contributors to the tax levy.

Moody’s Investors Service continues its Aa1 credit rating of Penfield. This rating allows the town to secure low-interest financing for capital projects and assists with cash flow throughout the year.

The town also continues to receive “no designation” in the state’s fiscal monitoring system. With a score of 1.7 in 2019, Penfield is below the 44.9% tolerance point that indicates possible fiscal stress. Factors include cash ratio, employee salaries, debt burden and fund balance.

“We have another fiscally sound budget adopted by the Town Board for 2021,” said Barbara Chirdo, town comptroller. “The town’s levy increase for 2021 is again below the levy cap established by the state comptroller. With ‘no designation’ in regard to susceptibility to financial stress, I am proud to say the town’s financial health is well below any level of risk as determined by the Office of the State Comptroller.”

The 2021 adopted budget is available online. Print copies are available at Penfield Public Library, 1985 Baird Road, or the Office of the Comptroller in Penfield Town Hall, 3100 Atlantic Ave. Visit penfield.org for information.

Stock photo.