ONEONTA, NY – The coronavirus has forced the temporary shutdown of many businesses, both locally and across the nation.
This has meant not only a financial loss for these businesses and the people they employ but also for the municipalities where they are located.
At Tuesday’s city of Oneonta common council meeting, Finance Director Virginia Lee said Oneonta faces – at worst - the possibility of a $2.7 million shortfall in sales tax revenue.
Contributing to the revenue loss has been the shutdown of Oneonta and Hartwick colleges, as well as this year’s Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony’s move to 2021.
Sales tax makes up approximately 30 percent of the city’s revenue. The loss of this revenue could play a major factor when it comes time to plan the city’s budget this fall.
Fortunately, Lee Says, the city has been setting aside extra funds – just in case.
“We’ve got a really good strong fund balance to see us through this. So in either scenario, from the mild to the severe, I believe our fund balances are strong enough to carry us through even a $3 million loss.”
Lee also pointed out that monies collected from ambulance and EMS calls are also down.
Since more people are staying home these days, there just aren’t as many emergency calls to respond to.