Thursday, October 29, 2009

1600% Tax Increase!

Now its a 1600% tax increase in the NH Town Tax in NY Mills! This is a perfect example of how absolutely nuts our system of local government is.

There was a movement afoot a few years ago among certain residents for NYM to secede from the Towns and form its own town. Meetings were held between the village council and officials of the towns where the towns explained what villagers got for their tax dollars. The opportunity to occasionally borrow equipment was the best they could come up with. After that the NH tax was dropped . . . and so was the movement . . .

Now the taxes are back, and NYM residents have to ask themselves what value do they get from being part of the Towns of New Hartford and Whitestown.

Like NH and Utica subsidize County 911 services elsewhere in the County, but get nothing in return because they meet their own needs, the same thing is happening between the village and the towns. VILLAGE RESIDENTS SUBSIDIZE TOWN GOVERNMENT, getting nothing of substance in return because the village provides all the services.

In theory, total taxes for local services should be LOWER in the villages than in the Towns, because villages are compact and can provides the services to themselves more efficiently. Instead, New York State turns the system inside out by allowing Towns to duplicate village services and to bill village residents for them . . . making the tax burden on village residents higher than in the towns. The natural consequence of that is population loss from villages and gain by the surrounding towns.



Anonymous said...

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

It is time to dissolve villages. They serve no purpose other than to duplicate services in place by the towns. If you don't get this, you don't get it period.

We can't cut taxes without cutting duplication. 911 in NH and Utica is the perfect example. If you don't want to consolidate, then don't complain about paying for something you don't use.

Strikeslip said...

Wrong Wrong Wrong, Anonymous. It is not time to dissolve villages (Although it might be time in this area for them to merge with adjacent cities if they are contiguous to them).

You have it bass-ackwards. Towns that have gone beyond providing bare bones government serve no purpose other than to duplicate services already in place in the villages...

Towns and Counties are merely lines drawn on a map from a government "above" to ensure some governmental presence.

Villages and cities represent settlements of people who have grouped themselves together for some common reason.

The distinguishing features of Villages/Cities vs Towns/Counties are that the former have (1) greater population density and (2)(usually) more services than the latter. It is the greater population density that makes a higher level of services possible AND AFFORDABLE .

Towns that go beyond providing mere governmental presence are like * cancerous tumors * growing on the backs of villages to the extent that they have duplicated village services and charge village residents for them.

Anonymous said...

No I don't have it bass-ackwards.

There is no reason for village government to exist. It is simply another duplicative level of government that can be absorbed into the larger town government function quite easily.

My goodness for an area the size of a small city, how many police, fire and highway departments do you need?

Anonymous said...

If villages are not consolidated into towns or cities, there can be no consolidation unless we adopt a metro system. Practiaclly speaking, this will not happen in two lifetimes. To reduce layers, the most reasonable,efficient, cost effective and reachable is the consolidation of villages into towns.

Strikeslip said...

It's Population Density, Anonymous, that you need to focus on. I agree, how many police, fire and highway depts. do you need.

If a village contained more population than the surrounding Town, I would agree with a Village-into-town merger. If not, merger would merely give people in the outlying area the opportunity to make a raid on village resources.

I would be in favor of NH, Whitestown, Marcy, Deerfield, all included villages, the water authority and the sewer district all merging with Utica. That would eliminate 4 Town governments, 5 village governments, an authority and a special district! The difference here is that the government would be controlled by those living in the densely populated areas (since people in Utica and the villages combined would outnumber the people in the towns). There would be a reluctance to extend services outward into new area unless income from new taxes would balance the increased cost of extending services. That would put the brake on sprawl.

Merger of small population villages into a larger population town will lead to either loss of a service (because it cant be efficiently spread over a larger area) or increase the expense of the service.

Anonymous said...

What resources of a village would a town want to raid? Eliminating duplicative services such as public safety or highway departments is not a raid, but common sense. And if those in a dissolved Village want to maintain certain services, all they have to do is form a tax district and pay for it without burdening the taxpayers from the outer areas of a town.

Sorry, but I could never, ever endorse the merger of any town of village with Utica. Utica has a long history of politicians who lack moral and ethical standards of any type and the people continue to elect them. There must be something nasty in the water to create such an unethical population who endorse such activity.

Silence DoGood said...

People, people, people The sound you hear is the people who are able to leave the area will!!! Those who stay because of family, etc have to put up with 1600% tax increase. If your 401 K did that well in one year you be gone too. The reason government locally functions as poorly as they do is they can demand such an increase and get it, not earn it. When you reward bad performance you get what you get. Good luck in wishing, get involved if you want to make a difference.

Anonymous said...

the taxpayers in NYM get NOTHING from either town (NH/WHSTWN)except the bill to share in administrative expenses. No services and no relief! The system has gotta change. But it won't. Look at Patterson, trying to cut the state budget and he's being run out of office. Too many New Yorkers on the govt payroll--they'll kill us everytime!

Greens and Beans said...

Silence DoGood expresses a very correct and candid point. “Classical Conditioning” is the term that Developmental Psychologists exemplifies how one should essentially reward the behavior that one wants to be replicated. In politics, apathy rewards the status quo. The following is a classic example of how citizens and blogs like “Fault Lines and New Hartford on Line” can influence the politicians who are paid to supposedly represent us.

In a prior blog post regarding this very subject matter (, I took New York Mills Mayor Robert Maciol to the proverbial woodshed over his lackluster remark in the OD over, what we thought was going to be a 700% tax hike for the residents of New York Mills. ( Now, after discovering that the Town tax hike for New York Mills’ residents will actually be more like 1600%, he has miraculously become “outraged!” He said in an OD article that “Seven-hundred percent was certainly unacceptable,”. . . “Sixteen-hundred percent? That’s outrageous.” ( The Mayor actually misquoted himself. His remark to the 700% tax increase was simply “Very unfortunate.” ( The New York Mills residents, who reside within the Town of New Hartford, need to express their outrage by attending the next New Hartford Town Board Meeting. Perhaps an informational picket at this time would send an important message to these bungling politicians. But most of all, the entire voting population of the Town of New Hartford needs to remember their names when they enter the voting booth on Tuesday!

Anonymous said...

It's time to disssolve all these mini fifedoms that local politicians have created for themselves, like the 6-7 local police depts. within a 10 mile radius. It's a joke. Why do we need all these law enforcement agencies? To hand out speeding tickets to help support a jobs program for the well connected? It's a farce. But until the local populace wises up, taxes will continue to rise as the pigs feed from the taxpayer funded trough.

Strikeslip said...

We need THIS.

Anonymous said...

We elect the politicians who so poorly represent us. What does that say? Perhaps, money issues will finally wake up more voters and taxpayers at our local level as the obscene debt and money printing is starting to do at the national level. If the next few election cycles here do not result in attracting and electing those who have some political courage and intelligence, the area will never again grow.

Silence DoGood said...

Well you have a good point. Now will the Mayor and Village Board of NYM represent the village residences in regards to the tax increased imposed upon them by the Town? Will they fight for the people they represent?
No longer can they expect individuals to protest, but they themselves should show leadership and unite with the village and get out from under the towns of NH and Whitestown thumb. You can expect people to continue to pay taxes for the pleasure of living in some geographic political boundaries and offer NO SERVICES of than mismanagement. If you read this blog Mr Mayor please lead by action not empty words.