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City treasurer seeks auditors, technology on tax filings

City Council’s finance committee gave a positive recommendation Tuesday for the city treasurer/tax collection office to hire an auditing firm and tax bureau for city tax return purposes.

The proposed contract is for the city to hire McCarthy and Co. to audit and provide accounting for collection of business privilege taxes at $190 per hour. A second proposal given a positive recommendation was a proposed agreement between the city and York Adams Tax Bureau, which is to be paid $7,500 to put into place a system working with city software to allow businesses to file local services tax online, said Nicholas Grimes, city tax collector and treasurer.

“Now that we have gotten through the collection deadline the services are more needed,” Grimes said.

Councilwoman Liz Miele, committee chair, said it will be beneficial to have the service online and for the city tax filers and she also wanted to put the resolution with contract and prices on the city Website to be transparent.

“We don’t currently allow mercantile and business privilege tax filing online,” Miele said.

Making the tax collection in-house, a move pushed by Grimes, has resulted in lower costs overall than a prior agency charged the city to collect business privilege taxes, Grimes said.

In another vote, the committee gave a positive recommendation for an agreement with state Department of Transportation to reimburse the city $10,126 as city streets and parks

department vehicle operators clear streets of snow in winter that are maintained by the state. The streets are: Campbell Street, between Third and Fourth streets; Campbell Street west to the city line; Hepburn Street, between Basin and Fourth streets; Ridge Avenue, from Fourth Street to Grimesville Road, Via Bella, between Hepburn and Basin streets; and Basin Street, between Via Bella and Third Street.

The committee also gave a nod for River Valley Transit to purchase two compressed natural gas low-floor buses. The buses cost $635,065 each. The costs are 100 percent state-funded with no local match, said Adam Winder, River Valley Transit general manager.

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