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North Country News

Plattsburgh Mayor Discusses City Issues

Plattsburgh Mayor Colin Read
Colin Read for Mayor/Facebook
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Plattsburgh Mayor Colin Read

The New York state Comptroller’s Fiscal Stress Monitoring System ranks the city of Plattsburgh among 10 municipalities in the state under moderate stress. Within that category, Plattsburgh ties with Rockland County for most stressed. Plattsburgh Mayor Colin Read, a first-term Democrat, was not surprised the city received that designation because it is based on data from financial reports for the 2017 fiscal year. The city has implemented a five-year budget planning process to reverse the trend.  Read tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley for the 2019 budget year, city leaders this month approved a budget that is under the tax cap and minimizes tax increases.
“It’s really hard work actually. If you look at the last couple of budgets that I’ve worked with on the council we’ve had the smallest rate of increase in the tax levy of any mayor in this millennium. We believe that we just don’t have a latitude to keep raising taxes so most of the work that we identify is in reducing expenditures, especially reducing the pace of increase of expenditures, consolidation, shared services and these sorts of things. We’re trying to reinvent government because we don’t think we have the easy way out any more just crank up taxes as governments often do.”  

A resolution to lift Plattsburgh’s cryprocurrency moratorium is on tonight’s city council agenda. A vote last week was tabled. Our conversation with Mayor Colin Read will continue tomorrow as he discusses city parking challenges and controversy over a condemned footbridge over the Saranac River.

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