Celoron Board Remembers Mayor Keeney

CELORON – Business continued for the village of Celoron on Monday despite losing its mayor Saturday.

The Celoron Village Board held its regular monthly meeting following the passing of John “Jack” Keeney, who succumbed to cancer. The meeting was led by Scott Schrencengost, village trustee and deputy mayor, who will be acting mayor until someone else is appointed to the position. Toward the end of the meeting, village officials spoke about the passing of their mayor.

“The community is better off having known him … I hope we caring on in a way he would be proud of,” said Robin Young, village trustee.

Keeney had been mayor of the lakeside village since 2009. He was re-elected in 2011. During his tenure, Keeney spearheaded events to bring the community together, especially for seniors and community youths. Keeney led efforts to improve Lucille Ball Memorial Park. He was still working on a waterfront revitalization project to add a boardwalk and to make other improvements to the park.

Schrencengost said whoever is the next mayor will have “big shoes” to fill following Keeney as mayor.

“He turned this into a full-time position instead of a part-time position,” he said.

In other village business, the Village Board held a public hearing on a proposal to override the 2 percent tax levy cap for the 2013-14 budget. No one from the public spoke during the hearing. After the hearing, the Village Board passed a resolution to override the 2 percent tax levy cap. Shirley Sanfilippo, village clerk, presented the board with the tentative 2013-14 village budget. Sanfilippo said it doesn’t appear the village will exceed the state’s 2 percent tax levy cap, but the board should pass the resolution just incase there is a problem in the future.

“It protects us from being penalized incase of a mistake,” she said.

In the tentative budget there is a proposed $1,541 tax levy increase, which would be a 1 percent increase. The tax levy total would be $211,089. The tax levy is the money raised through property taxes. The tentative tax rate would be $6.41 per $1,000 assessed property value. That would be a 9 cents increase over the 2012-13 tax rate. The proposed total budget is $476,535, which is an increase of $6,441 or 1 percent.

A public hearing will be held on the proposed 2013-14 spending plan at 7 p.m. March 25.

The board also approved David Rowe to be the new village code enforcement officer. Rowe will finish the unexpired term of Frank Fonti, who resigned from the position in January. The term runs until Dec. 2.