BATAVIA – Despite reluctance to override the state 2 percent cap on real property tax collections, the Genesee County Legislature this week approved a local law that does exactly that.
The “just in case” caution is unlikely but must be in place before a budget is adopted, should the tax burden exceed the state-imposed cap. County Manager Jay A. Gsell called it “a procedural step.”
The proposed $149.1 million spending plan for 2014 calls for raising $27.3 million by local taxation. That’s an increase of half a million dollars or 1.5 percent over this year.
The new tax rate would be $10.04 for each $1,000 of assessed valuation, costing the average homeowner an additional $15 to $20.
Three-fourths of the county’s spending, according to Gsell, is for state-mandated programs, topped by Medicaid, which consumes about one-third of local property tax revenue.
The Legislature also approved:
• A contract extension with Freed Maxick Healthcare of Buffalo to oversee collection of $5.2 million in overdue accounts from the county nursing home.
The service, which began three months ago, has collected more than $500,000 in overdue accounts from Medicaid and private insurers. The firm is paid $250 an hour with a maximum of just under $10,000.
• A contract extension with Morrison Senior Diners of Atlanta to manage and operate dietary services at the nursing home at an annual cost of $33,737.
• An adult day care contract with Tender Loving Care of Le Roy at a cost estimated by the Office for the Aging at $14,500 for next year. The amount is offset by grants.