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Mt. Pleasant Area School District evaluating Corbett spending proposal

| Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013, 12:02 a.m.

Mt. Pleasant Area School District Superintendent Terry Struble told the board on Tuesday that he is carefully monitoring the proposals made by Gov. Tom Corbett in his budget address. Struble said there is a possibility the governor's proposals could mean extra funding for the school district.

In addition to money that may be generated from the sale of state liquor stores and proposed changes in pensions, Corbett may look into providing $90 million in basic education funding to school districts across the state.

“That would be $90 million spread out over 500 schools, but add that to the change in PSERs and it could create a ripple for us,” Struble said.

Along that same note, board President Robert Gumbita said the district has tried to be fiscally conservative over the years. He asked the board to keep the residents of Mt. Pleasant Township in mind when working on the budget and when considering any possible tax increase.

Gumbita said a new sewage system that was put in the township has resulted in tap-in fees of $1,500 per residence, plus additional costs that add up to about $4,000 per household.

“That is not counting the $52 monthly bill that they will now receive,” Gumbita said. “Let's try our best to keep our taxes at the current rate.”

Rick Albright, who is the board representative to the Westmoreland County Career and Technical Center, reported on Tuesday that the proposed reconstruction the school was considering has been put on hold.

Albright said several school districts did not consider the option of the reconstruction.

Albright said that there are three main areas of the center that need addressed.

“There is the road, the boiler and the ventilation in the welding department,” Albright said. “Those are three major ones right there.”

The board Tuesday decided it will vote on the possible purchase of three new vehicles during its regular meeting scheduled for Monday.

The new vehicles are a van and two Chevy Silverado trucks, one with a integrated tool box and the second one that will feature a stainless steel bed.

“We are looking at a stainless steel dump bed because we would like to look into the purchase of bulk salt verses the bagged salt that we use,” Struble said. “The savings over a period of five to six years may end up paying for the truck itself.”

The vehicles will be purchased from monies gained from the capitol proceeds from a 2008 bond and will replace three similar vehicles that all have high mileage.

Marilyn Forbes is a freelance writer.

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