SPENCER — The 2021 budget hearing began the Spencer Town Board Meeting on Nov. 10.

Supervisor Allen Fulkerson revealed that the budget is up 7.75% while the tax rate is down 6.09%. This decrease in tax rate with an increase in budget is possible because the reevaluation of the town increased taxable property values.

A $400,000 bond has been deposited in the highway investment account. These funds will cover a $239,000 invoice for partial payment of Hulbert Hollow Road work. The payment for this bond which funds work on Hulbert Hollow Road is included in the 2021 budget. The public hearing regarding the budget closed with no comments.

The following open floor brought up frustrations with the current town website provided by Digital Towpath. In response, Sander van Dijk, who had introduced the town board to an alternative website provider, presented the possible new website to the whole board.

Town Clerk Terri MacCheyne has viewed the website and shared that the new site is much easier to access and manage. The new website provided by Squarespace would only cost between $18 to $25 per month as opposed to the website provided by Digital Towpath costing around $900 per year.

An issue to consider with a new website provider is who hosts the town’s email. If the current website provider also hosts the town’s email, switching websites may not be so simple. MacCheyne and the board do not think emails are hosted by Digital Towpath, but more information needs to be confirmed surrounding the emails before a final decision about the website is made.

Accepting the new website has been tabled for now, but the board is leaning toward rejecting a contract renewal with Digital Towpath for the current website even if the new website is not up yet.

Aman Drive, Agnes Lane and Timothy Lane are roads around the Town of Spencer that were kept by the county. However, the county offered the roads to the Town of Spencer, waiving the typical fee. The board accepted a resolution to add them to the town, and these roads will now be under the highway department’s maintenance.

One of the last items on the agenda was a contract renewal with the Village of Spencer Volunteer Fire Department. The contract is not different from other years, and the board passed the motion to accept it.

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