Proposed Monroeville budget has no tax increase
Monroeville’s proposed budget does not include a recommendation to increase property taxes, according to the municipality’s manager.
Manager Tim Little presented his proposed 2020 budget before council at an Oct. 8 meeting.
The $35.3 million budget reflects a 1.45% decrease from 2019’s budget and includes a $2.5 million transfer from the municipality’s general fund into its capital improvements plan to address Monroeville’s “deteriorating assets” for the next five years.
Typically, the capital improvement plan gets a $1 million boost from the general fund, Little said.
The deteriorating assets include roads, traffic lights, parks and recreation equipment, vehicles and buildings.
But Little warned council that using money from the general fund to pay for capital projects is not “sound fiscal policy.”
“Caution should apply beyond 2020 in that the fund balance can significantly decrease due to unforeseen capital expenditures,” read the manager’s message to council in his proposed budget.
Despite the warning, Little said the municipality’s fund balance remains healthy. According to the proposed budget, the total unassigned fund balance will sit at $12.7 million by Dec. 31, 2020.
Paving roads continues to be a necessity, Little said, adding the municipality paved 2.3 miles of road in 2019. To keep up with the maintenance, he said the municipality should be paving seven miles each year.
“We’re nowhere near that. We should be paving $2 million a year just on paving roads alone,” Little said while addressing council.
Council added another $500,000 to its road repair program in March after adopting a 2019 budget that already included $1 million for that line item. In 2018, council earmarked $1.8 million for road repair.
The budget also includes the hiring of three full-time employees – an assistant manager, an additional IT staff member and a deputy chief of police – to prepare for administrative retirements in the next two to four years.
Little also recommended to council a $15,000 expense to hire an economic development consultant.
“Monroeville needs to have an advocate for them to be able to ascertain what kind of retail is going to be a win-win situation here in Monroeville,” Little said.
Little’s budget proposal will be mulled over by council over the next month or two. Public hearings are scheduled for Nov. 7 and 14 in council chambers. A copy of the proposed budget can be read online at bit.ly/314z45B.
Dillon Carr is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Dillon at 412-871-2325, [email protected] or via Twitter .