Rising costs could add up to Latrobe budget shortfall
Given a draft budget report by City Manager Alex Graziani, Latrobe council has to consider how to account for rising salary costs and shrinking revenue that could add up to a $113,000 shortfall in 2014 and possibly translate into a tax increase.
Graziani said during a council agenda meeting on Monday that 55 percent of the projected $5.2 million in expenditures comes from a 3 percent increase in staff salaries, partially the result of benefits and contracted increases.
“Those contracted amounts helped push the 55 percent of the budget, which helps push the entire budget in its trajectory,” he said.
All nonunion city employees, except for the manager, will receive a 2 percent salary increase. For 2013, the city balanced the budget using money from the general fund.
That amount was projected to be about $103,000 at the beginning of the year, and instead will be closer to about $250,000, Graziani said.
With about $5.1 million projected in revenue, the spending plan is up 3.5 percent overall, he said.
In his report to council, Graziani calculated that without any cuts to expenses to make up for the budget shortfall, real estate taxes would have to be raised 2 mills. For a house valued at $100,000, this would mean an additional $42.80 per year for that household, according to the report.
Graziani said the report was a preliminary one and the first chance council has had to view it to determine whether a tax increase or budget cuts are the best solution. For every dollar paid in real estate taxes, 64 cents goes to the Greater Latrobe School District; 18 cents goes to Westmoreland County; and 18 cents goes to the city, according to the report.
“Most residents feel that acutely, so it really squeezes us,” he said.
Stacey Federoff is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Greensburg Salem to consider additional cost-cutting measures
- Westmoreland used car dealers indicted in fraud
- 2 from Westmoreland County charged in child porn investigation
- Derry Area proposes 2-mill tax increase
- Charges dismissed against former Westmoreland jail guard accused of sex with inmate
- Unity municipal authority to impose 5 percent late fee
- Penn Township man pleads guilty to assaulting 3 police officers
- Brutal winter hits Latrobe water system pipes, budget
- Sewickley Township agrees to lease for land for playground
- Travel restrictions to be lifted on Route 30 in Hempfield
- Lawyers for convicted killer Smyrnes want info about death row