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Kittanning Twp. gets OK for tax abatement

Renatta Signorini
| Friday, May 21, 2010

Kittanning Township can now offer tax abatement for development or improvements to existing structures after the county commissioners approved the measure Thursday.

It is the latest county municipality to join the list having Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance (LERTA) for its business and residential areas.

"Kittanning Township has decided that they will designate the entire township" for participation in the industrial and residential LERTA programs, said Commissioner Patty Kirkpatrick.

Several other county municipalities participate in the program, including Ford City, Kittanning and Elderton.

The state's Act 76, known as the LERTA , authorizes taxing bodies to provide abatements. The program applies abatements to new construction and renovations made to existing buildings.

In other business, the commissioners:

• Honored Mark A. Campbell, deputy warden for 20 years of service with the county. Campbell is retiring today and was presented a plaque by the county's prison board.

"Mark was the kind of guy always at work early every day," said Warden David Hogue.

Campbell was gracious toward the county, but said he may "regret" the decision to retire.

"You've helped to make the jail the department that really has been outstanding," Kirkpatrick said, citing good inspections of the facility in Rayburn Township.

Commissioner Rich Fink said he has known Campbell for many years and admired his work ethic.

"It's going to be a hard void to fill out there," he said.

• Approved a contract extension for the jail's food service provider, Nutrition, Inc. The cost is currently $2.15 per tray and will increase over the next three years by 2.8 percent, 2.7 percent and 2 percent, said Warden David Hogue.

• Approved an agreement between the health center and Aetna, an insurance company. Janet McKinley, financial director of the health center, said the agreement will allow the center to accept patients covered by Aetna.

• Approved a contract agreement with Town and Country Transit for 2010-11. The agreement ensures that the county will pay its share toward the authority's operating budget -- $5,886.

• Proclaimed May "Mental Health Awareness Month."

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