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Mt. Pleasant's preliminary 2014 budget requires no tax hike

| Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2013, 9:01 p.m.

Mt. Pleasant Borough Council on Monday voted to authorize advertisement of a preliminary 2014 budget which calls for no tax increase for borough residents.

The $1.2 million spending plan calls for the same amounts in projected expenditures and in projected revenues, said councilwoman Susan Ruszkowski, who chairs the governmental body's finance committee.

“Our (projected) revenue this year is $14,281 less than it was last year at this time, so we had find ways to cut projected expenditures without compromising those three main services — Medic 10, police department and fire department,” Ruszkowski said. “All those services will stay intact, and all without raising taxes.”

The move came after council voted, 5-4, to approve 1.5 percent raises for the borough's non-union management employees for next year.

Councilwoman Cynthia Stevenson made the motion to provide the five non-union employees the salary increases.

“Our borough employees work very hard. There are numerous examples of them finding ways to save money for the borough,” Stevenson said on Tuesday following the meeting. “If the budget allows, a modest raise is appropriate.”

Stevenson, along with fellow council members Corey Snyder, David Pritts, Larry Tate and James Wojnar voted for the raises for borough Manager Jeff Landy, Secretary Beverly Fedorchak, police Chief Stephen Ober, street department Manager Mario Fontanazza and waste water treatment plant Manager Norm Stout.

Ruszkowski, along with council President Joseph Bauer, and fellow council members Fred McCloy and Diane Bailey voted against the raises.

In other business, Stout reported on the construction of a storm water runoff system in the borough. He said that directing department officials do the work in-house saved the borough as much as $125,000.

In other business, council voted to:

• Approve the proposed budget of the Mt. Pleasant Business District Authority

• Authorize advertising the 2014 budgets for Medic 10 and liquid fuels

• Approve the 2014 schedule of council meetings and the holiday schedule.

A.J. Panian is an editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at apanian@tribweb.com or 724-547-5722.

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