No new taxes projected in Shandaken budget

By Jay Braman Jr.
After a solid month’s worth of bad news, most of it having to do with flooding and other disasters, the taxpayers of Shandaken got some good news this week.

According to Shandaken Town Supervisor Rob Stanley, the preliminary budget plan for the town calls for only a tiny tax increase.

To explain it, Stanley put it this way. “If you paid $1,000 last year in town taxes, this year you will pay $1,000.50.”

To accomplish that goal, Stanley said deep cuts were made to the budget. He also reminded all that the budget is not yet etched in stone, and over the next month it will probably undergo some changes before being finalized.

But, at present, storm clean up remains the big issue in the community, Stanley told listeners at Monday night’s town board meeting.

“We are awaiting bridge repairs on Oliverea Road,” he said. And all over town people are still digging out.

To help out, the town has set up several dumpsites where people can bring flood refuse.
Community dumpsters have been set up at the Big Indian Firehouse, the Shandaken Firehouse, the Mount Tremper Post Office, the Phoenicia Parish Field and on Risley Road. Also a special “natural debris” dump is located at the state fishing access point on Route 28 in Phoenicia between the Phoenicia Plaza and the Phoenicia Diner.

Stanley asks that all junk brought to these sites be placed in the dumpsters and not near them because then someone must go there and pick up that junk and put it inside the receptacles.
These locations have proven popular as everything, including the kitchen sink, seems to have become junk for many in town.

But Stanley warns the opportunity won’t be there long.

“We do not anticipate these dumpsters being available after this month,” he said.
In other storm related news, most Phoenicia businesses are back open and the general appearance of the hamlet is pretty good thanks to the efforts of the Phoenicia Rotary, which organized a batch of volunteers with strong backs and solid pick up trucks to help people clean up after the storm, not just in Phoenicia but throughout the entire town.

“I’d like to thank the Phoenicia Rotary again for this monumental task,” he said.

As things slowly return to normal, one issue that was on the front burner until being washed away by the tropical storms has come to the forefront again.

The controversial Phoenicia sewer issue will be the subject of a special meeting later this month.