11 Questions With City Chamberlain
Q: What does the Chamberlain's office do?
A: The Chamberlain is the treasurer of the City. Our staff of five complete a variety of tasks every day. Among these are: collecting tax payments and other fees, paying all the bills for every city department, maintaining a balanced budget while updating the records of all financial transactions made by all city departments. Calculating the payroll for all employees of the City of Oswego is another duty of this department. Also, city, county, and returned school taxes are collected by the Chamberlain's Office.
Q: Where should I pay my property tax bills?
A: Payments can be paid in person at the Chamberlain's Office or mailed to the City Chamberlain City of Oswego, City Hall, 13 West Oneida Street, Oswego, NY 13126.
Q: When are my property taxes due?
A: County property taxes are paid all or in part in January. It is possible to pay one half in February but there is a 1% penalty. City property taxes are due in April and June. There is a 1% treasurer's fee for paying the second half in June. Our office also collects past-due school taxes until the following May at which time we transfer the unpaid school taxes to the County for collection.
Q: What other bills could be paid at the Chamberlain's Office?
A: There are numerous other bills that can be paid at our office including water bills, building permit fees, rental permit fees, road cut fees, various assessments, rent for private use of city buildings, parking tickets, etc.
Q: What happens if I don't pay my taxes or other assessments?
A: All assessments including water bills plus applicable penalties are added to subsequent year's tax bills as additional property taxes. After one year, we turn over unpaid taxes to the County for collection and or eventual foreclosure.
Q: How is the Chamberlain's office involved with the budget?
A: The Chamberlain is a member of the Mayor's budget commission along with 3 members of the Council and the City Attorney. The final budget, upon approval by the Common Council, is entered into the City's computer by the Chamberlain's staff, who oversees making sure expenditures are correctly matched with budgeted appropriations.
Q: Have any changes been made this year to the budget?
A: This year as in previous years the mayor has met with every department in an effort to decrease spending and maintain a level tax rate.
Q: What do you do with left over budgeted money?
A: Any unencumbered (unspent) funds go into a fund balance for future budget planning.
Q: How are you involved with the Common Council?
A: The Common Council has bi-weekly meetings which the City Chamberlain attends. At these meetings, proposals are made for certain city projects and the Common Council then votes on granting the proposals. Funding for the projects is then proposed by our office. Any borrowing must have a two-thirds majority vote of the Common Council.
Q: How is the Chamberlain's Office involved with the City's health insurance plans?
A: Mrs. Deborah Coad, the City Chamberlain, is responsible for dealing with all the City's health insurance issues.
Q: Where can I find more information about the Chamberlain's Office?
A: Our office, located on the first floor of City Hall, is open from 9-5 Monday through Friday. You can call 342-8105 for more information.
The City Chamberlain can be reached at 342-8105 or you can e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.