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Dunbar Township OKs tentative budget without tax increase

Dunbar Township supervisors adopted a $1.47 million tentative budget for 2012 that holds the line on real estate taxes at .578 mills.

At Wednesday night's meeting, Ronald Keller, who serves as the secretary/treasurer, said the millage rate generates $5.78 on every $10,000 of assessed property value. That means a resident whose home is valued at $100,000 would pay $57.80 in real estate taxes in 2012.

Keller said the proposed spending plan includes the following revenue: $392,000 in fund equity; $629,000 in taxes; $68,000 in licenses and permits; $23,000 in interest, rents and royalties; and $281,000 in intergovernmental revenue, according to Keller.

The budget's expenditures include $100,000 for general government; $82,000 for public safety; $13,000 for health and welfare; $758,000 for highways, roads and streets; $1,000 for culture and recreation; and $461 for miscellaneous expenses, he said.

In other business, supervisors accepted a temporary holding tank agreement between the township and Chevron at a Marcellus shale gas well drilling site, pending approval by township solicitor Don McCue of the McCue & Husband law firm in Connellsville.

McCue said he wanted to make sure that the holding tank would be inspected and Chevron would agree to haul it away when it is no longer needed.

"Chevron wants a permit to use a holding tank on the gas well site," Keller said. "We have a holding tank ordinance that was approved in the past. But we do want to make sure that we have no liability on the holding tank."

Under the conditions of the ordinance, Keller said, the township holds $1,000 in cash and requires a $1,000 permit fee.

Supervisor John Tabaj said he thinks the supervisors should research the holding tank agreement before moving ahead to approve it.

"I have been working with these gas companies for a long time," Tabaj said. "This is something that we need to check out."

As long as Chevron complies with the holding tank ordinance and requirements imposed by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Keller said, he doesn't see a problem with it.

The township extended burning days every day except Sunday during daytime hours only until the next supervisors' meeting in December.

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