Budgets pass finance review

NORWICH – The Chenango County Finance Committee tackled a number of 2008 budgets at a work session Friday, passing through increases for information technology, the Public Defender’s Office and the amount set aside annually for community college chargebacks.

Increase requests made by the Planning and Economic Development Department and the Chenango County Council on the Arts were tabled.

Many of the higher costs that will be passed onto taxpayers are for computer-related equipment. The IT department is requesting a new $12,000 server, for example. Copiers are in high demand, with no less than five departments requesting permission to purchase new equipment next year.

“Computers have ended up costing us rather than saving us,” Town of Pharsalia Supervisor Dennis Brown said during a recent budget work session.

Community College charge backs are projected to go up 26.6 percent next year, costing local taxpayers $200,000 on the levy. New York’s community colleges have varied negotiated rates for full-time equivalent students, but all are subsidized – in equal thirds – by the enrolled student, by the county where that student resides and by the state.

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