Click on the inset pictures to get a better view of which homes are in each defunct district.
Town of Brookhaven residents can soon expect a check in the mail after the Town Board unanimously voted to pass a resolution that would return remaining fund balances to taxpayers in six dissolved special water districts.
“This is part of the $20 million grant that the town got to consolidate shared services to improve efficiency,” Ed Romaine, town supervisor, said at the June 27 town meeting.
The Municipal Consolidation and Efficiency Plan is designed to consolidate town services and create shared services with other local municipalities to help cut costs. The dissolution of the six water districts was part of that consolidation, and when they were dissolved there were outstanding fund balances.
The plan dates back to the 2018 $20 million grant that was awarded by New York State, which went toward modernizing services while reducing the burden on taxpayers by reducing redundancy in local governments and pursuing opportunities for increasing shared services.
“All of that money is going back to the residents of those water districts,” the supervisor said. “They will get a check in the mail — [the amount] will vary from district to district.”
The town supervisor mentioned one of the benefits of consolidating services and eliminating the special districts, is that people who are now covered by the Suffolk County Water Authority but were once part of paper districts will get some of that money back.
In total, the town will return approximately $500,000 to taxpayers. The money is from remaining fund balances from fiscal year 2018 that earned interest in 2019.
The highest refund will go to the taxpayers who were served by the dissolved Sound Beach Water Supply District. The district, as of December 2018, had a remaining fund balance of $274,018.97.
Kevin Molloy, Brookhaven Town spokesperson, said residents of the special district that covered over 3,000 parcels will get an average refund of $89. The range of the refunds for Sound Beach varies from as low as 49 cents to as high as $2,638.
The West Setauket Water Supply District had a remaining fund balance of $71,363.35, and each resident is expected to receive an average refund of $126, according to Molloy.
Refunds will range from 14 cents to $476.
Molloy said the amount residents get will depend on the evaluation of their property in their respective district.
The refund will be handled by the town’s commissioner of finance who is authorized to remit all remaining fund balances of the dissolved special water districts, plus all accrued interest to the Town of Brookhaven tax receiver.
“Residents will be getting a check in the mail starting the beginning of [this] month and no later than August 31,” Molloy said.