Montoursville has no tax increase again

Montoursville Borough Council Tuesday night approved a $1.82 million budget for 2014 that once again holds the line on real estate taxes.

Borough officials noted it marks at least 21 years since taxes were increased to 2.3 mills.

Council President Robert Brobson said various expense cuts were made to help bring about a balanced budget.

It included slashing some $40,000 in engineering costs.

In addition, a total of $243,000 was shifted from the capital funds project to the general fund.

Brobson said the borough paid back $26,000 to the water fund.

In other years, funding from the water budget has been used to help balance the budget.

“We are selling more water in the past six to eight months,” he added.

The vote to pass the budget was 4-2.

Voting in favor were Brobson, Kim DiRocco, Ronald Shearer and Eugene Boyles.

Voting against were Mark Tillson and Dennis Holt.

Mayor John Dorin made it known that he had problems with the budget and how the borough is managing its finances.

He said over time the borough has infused $1.2 million into the budget instead of using that money to address water and sewer capital project needs.

Shearer told the mayor that some of those projects still are in the planning stages.

“I’d like to see your figures, John,” Brobson said.

Dorin said the water budget has decreased from $4.2 million to $2.5 million over time.

In other matters, Willing Hand Hose Fire Co. President Ed March told council about plans to build an addition onto the fire house.

“Basically, we’ve out-grown the space we have,” he said.

March explained that more room is needed for equipment and to house eight Pennsylvania College of Technology emergency medical technician students in the 38-year-old building.

Estimated cost for the 3,940-square-foot addition would be about $1.2 million, he said.

Council approved a 90-day extension request for a preliminary land development plan known as the Kriner Plaza near Wendy’s restaurant.

Council agreed to hold a public hearing to consider repealing certain portions of the borough’s flood plain ordinance.

Water Commissioner Ron Smith reported that the borough is about half-finished with its pickup of leaves.