At this week’s Common Council Economic & Finance Committee Meeting it was revealed that the City of Kingston will need to borrow money to get through the rest of the year. Apparently there is a shortage of about $2 million that will need to be borrowed in order to keep the City functioning through 2009. These are very difficult times ahead and like it or not, everyone will need to make sacrifices.
Also on the table was the Homestead/Non-Homestead rate once again. Homeowners could face a potential 12% rise even with a 0% budget increase just from the tax shift alone should the Council adopt the new rates discussed that would help balance the difference between commercial and personal properties. The potential decrease for the commercial sect would be about 2% which was reported at the meeting. We need our local business to keep our City vibrant, yet putting even more financial burden on our homeowners is going to hurt as well. Not an easy decision to make, yet doing nothing doesn’t solve the problem either.
Not For Nothing...I can’t figure how on the City’s website it boasts that Kingston has been designated as a “Tree City USA” yet not much is done to discourage the removal of our beautiful shade trees in our neighborhoods and historic districts. Take a ride up Peal Street & Wall Street and you will find smooth new concrete sidewalks with no trees, shrubs, or green anything along the north side of the street. We have stormwater issues in the uptown area, taking away trees & flower beds and adding concrete can add to the problem. Also removing indigenous bluestone sidewalks which are part of the area's charm is a loss as well. Kind of a Catch-22. Protect the street trees vs. safe even sidewalks. What is a homeowner/business owner to do? Restoration projects are costly and not many individuals would or could spend money like that, at least this owner did something.
The moral of this story is we need a plan. The last Comprehensive Plan was done in 1968. Without a compass you'll be lost.
Ok, with all that we need some happy time. Be sure to check out the Drum Boogie Festival in Kingston on Saturday….great entertainment!
All day Saturday 9/19 at Cornell Park off Wurts Street.