While cities and states across the country are struggling financially or on the verge of default, East Hampton Village — through careful budgeting and a few unexpected windfalls — ended up with around $700,000 more than expected when the fiscal books closed at the end of July.
“Revenue exceeded the budget,” Mayor Paul F. Rickenbach Jr. said at a village board meeting on Friday. Larry Cantwell, the village administrator, chalked up the good fortune to the fact that many of the village department heads kept a close eye on their budgets. “All the departments came in slightly under budget for the year,” he said.
“The village collected about $300,000 more in actual revenue that we originally estimated in the budget and we spent about $400,000 less than originally budgeted, and as a result we estimated the year endingd July 31, 2011, surplus was $700,000,” Mr. Cantwell said yesterday. “The $700,000 will be added to the fund balance and result in a fund balance going forward of $2.7 million.”
The village had carried a fund balance, for emergencies and unanticipated needs, of approximately 12 percent of the total budget of $18 million, or $2 million, but now will be able to reserve between 15 and 16 percent of the total budget, a change that ups the village’s credit rating and allows for any financing the village may seek to come with lower interest rates.
Increased revenue came from $100,000 in parking tickets and $100,000 in additional building fee permits, along with an increase in the number of beach permits offered for sale and in mortgage taxes paid to the village.
The exact figure will not be known until the end of the year, but for now, the village board is pleased.