How are the Village and Town governments organized?

Q: What is the difference between the Village of Ellenville and the Town of Wawarsing?
A: The Village of Ellenville is an incorporated village within the Town of Wawarsing.
Q: What does that mean?

A: Many towns and cities have villages or sections of the community that are referred to as villages but most of them are not incorporated villages. In New York, an incorporated village is a legal municipality. Incorporated villages have elected governments which have the authority to raise taxes and institute and enforce municipal laws. Under state law, incorporated village governments have all the same rights and responsibilities as town and city governments. However, incorporated villages must also be associated with a town. As long as both sides agree, villages and towns may each have their own municipal services or they may share some or all of them.

Q: I live in the Village of Ellenville, so why do I still get a tax bill from the Town of Wawarsing?
A: As mentioned above, incorporated villages are associated with a town and remain part of that town’s grand list. The Village of Ellenville is associated with the Town of Wawarsing, which means that all of the Village residents and businesses are part of the Town of Wawarsing's grand list and, therefore, can be taxed by the Town of Wawarsing.

Q: If I’m being taxed by the Village of Ellenville and I’m also being taxed by the Town of Wawarsing, what services does the Village provide?
A: The budget for the Village Police Department is contained within the Village budget. So are some other essential municipal services such as street, sewer, water and building.

Q: Are there any benefits to keeping the present local government system?
A: We believe that having a village government as well as a town government provides our residents with a higher quality of municipal services at relatively low cost, compared to other communities.

It allows us to provide a police department for a safer community, vital street and road maintenance, excellent community utilities, justice services, and a small, accessible municipal government that has the resources and flexibility to respond to your needs.