The Village of Great Neck has yet to finalize a 2023-24 budget due to some increases that village officials said during Tuesday night’s public meeting they are looking to curb.
One of the main increases, Mayor Pedram Bral said, would be fire contracts with the Great Neck Alert Fire Company. Bral said the Village of Great Neck has worked with Kings Point, Saddle Rock and Alert officials to see if they could “tighten” the company’s expenditures.
Bral also said some increases have been reported in the Great Neck Vigilant Fire Department’s annual budget as well. Despite some of the reported increases, Village Clerk-Treasurer Abraham Cohan said it is too early to release specific figures but told residents the budget “will be very close” to this year’s $12.1 million approved last April.
“There’s a lot of moving parts to the budget, so I don’t want to put any numbers on what the final amount will be,” Cohan said on Tuesday.
The village will be holding a special meeting to discuss the budget on Thursday at 8 p.m. at the village hall, 767 Middle Neck Road.
Cohan said there is roughly a $30,000 shift in taxes that homestead property owners will have to pay due to the slight decrease in non-homestead properties in the village this year. Homestead properties are classified as residential homes with three units or less, while non-homestead homes are classified as those with five or more residential units, mainly commercial buildings.
Bral said some of the dilapidated commercial buildings that have been torn down have been getting assessed at a lower value, so it shifts the tax burden to homestead owners. Having non-homestead or commercial developments come to Great Neck, he said, should be welcomed so that residential homeowners can see decreases in their taxes.
“One of the reasons it’s very important to have these developments is because we are going to shift our taxes back to non-homestead properties, so our taxes will not go up again,” Bral said. “In fact, they should come down.”
He also took time to discuss some reported misinformation circulating social media about the tax help some commercial developments have sought from the Nassau County Industrial Development Agency. Online chats, Bral said, have included claims that certain developments in the Great Neck peninsula go to the Nassau County Industrial Development Agency to try and get out of paying taxes.
The agency does not provide any tax exemptions, but rather payments in lieu of taxes, otherwise referred to as PILOTs. Structures that have tax-exempt status include schools, fire departments and religious facilities such as churches and synagogues.
Those applicants who take their projects to the agency, he said, will end up paying more and more taxes each year.
“They are going to pay more taxes a year after they build it than they pay now,” Bral said. “And every year those taxes will go up significantly.”