PLYMOUTH – As expected, borough council on Monday passed a $1.28 million budget with no tax increases.
At a Dec. 11 meeting, borough Coordinator Joe Mazur assured council he would present a budget with no tax increase, and he remained true to his word. Property taxes will remain at 5.7 mills. A mill is equal to $1 in property tax for every $1,000 of assessed property value.
Council approved the budget by a 4-3 vote, with Stanley Scibek, Ronald Kobusky, Albert Petcavage and President Frank Coughlin voting yes and Clif Madrack, James Dixon and Thomas McTague opposed.
The budget anticipates revenue of $1,177,900 and spending of $1,276,663; the difference will be made up by a $98,763 surplus, which Mazur said was achieved through his and council's frugality over the last two years.
In discussions, McTague asked that money budgeted for Secretary Dorothy Dolly Woodruff's salary and training her replacement next year be broken down into two line items. Woodruff, a borough employee for 25 years, plans to retire at the end of 2013.
McTague also noted $22,000 was budgeted for parking meter revenue for many years, but only $10,000 in 2012 and $5,000 for 2013. The last few years, we haven't gotten a dime out of it and I want to know why we don't enforce it, he said.
Coughlin asked if council should consider hiring a meter maid.
Absolutely, McTague said, adding that the borough would realize $12,000 if it paid a $10,000 salary and collected $22,000.
Mayor Dorothy Petrosky said her past requests for meter enforcement funding have gone unfulfilled.
McTague said Petrosky should have police devote time to parking meter enforcement. Petrosky said she would see that happens more often if they have time.
They have time to do it, mayor, McTague said.
That's your opinion, Petrosky replied. I disagree with you.
Madrack said the borough is in good financial shape, probably better financial shape than any community in the Wyoming Valley. He was glad to see funding increase for police.
Council also hired Richard Matthews as a streets department worker at $8.50 per hour; there were 14 applicants. Madrack voted against the appointment because the position wasn't advertised.
Madrack and Dixon vowed not to vote for any future hires unless all applicants were interviewed for the position. Coughlin said he would like all future hires to be interviewed.
View Plymouth Borough's 2012 and 2013 budgets at timesleader.com.