2009-10-15 / Local & State

Boro Council Begins To Address 2010 Budget

Contributions to pension fund will make for difficult budget
By Jean Snyder STAFF WRITER

McConnellsburg Borough Council began a preliminary, informal discussion of its 2010 budget, granted a Halloween parade permit and heard a mayoral proclamation on trick-ortreating during its regular meeting last Wednesday evening.

According to Jack Fields, borough secretary, the agreement the borough made with the Mc- Connellsburg Police Association upon the disbandment of the local police department effective December 31, 2008, will require the council to deposit $177,000 in the police pension fund by December 31, 2010. Fields indicated he is working on a proposed 2010 budget for the borough and is uncertain how to budget for the funds that will be needed for the police pension fund. According to Fields, there may be as much as $110,000 on hand that could be used, but would deplete any funds that might be needed for an emergency.

Council members discussed areas in which they may be able to cut costs, but came to no conclusions about it. All agreed that they did not want to raise taxes during such hard economic times. Fields was instructed to prepare a proposed budget for the November meeting for council’s discussion at that time. He was instructed not to cut any donations from last year for the proposed budget.

During new business, council voted to grant McConnellsburg Volunteer Fire Co. a parade permit for the Halloween parade to be held on Thursday evening, October 29, at 7:00 p.m. In a related matter, Mayor Jim Stenger also proclaimed Thursday evening as trick-or-treat night for all witches, ghosts and goblins. Trick-or-treating will be permitted on the 29th from 6-9 p.m, but only at homes where the porch lights are on.

Old business

During old business, council discussed stormwater and erosion issues as well as stream cleaning in the borough. Councilwoman Pat Frazier, who has been attending county stormwater management workshops, told council members that stormwater runoff in the eastern end of McConnellsburg continues to be a problem, but all agreed that the runoff in the borough comes largely from the townships that are not practicing erosion control. In a related matter, council members also discussed the debris in the creek just off South First Street near where the new water line is being constructed. Council agreed to speak with the local Conservation District about funding and expertise for cleaning the stream of debris.

Also during old business, council discussed property owners who are altering borough streets by applying paving or cold pack to make driveway access easier. Altering the borough streets is illegal without council’s permission and also makes it difficult for snowplowing. Council agreed to place an advertisement in the paper advising property owners that this practice is unlawful.

Council also heard from Fields that the lines on the curbing on North Second Street at the courthouse would be painted yellow in order to comply with sight distances for the new crosswalk in that area. The crosswalk is now operational.

In discussing other street issues, council agreed to reapply for Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds for the sidewalk paving project in the borough.

Council reviewed recommendations from their engineer, Keller Engineers, concerning the county’s renovation and rehabilitation project. The report notes some slight discrepancies and council referred it to their solicitor. Regular business

During regular business, council agreed to pay September bills in the amount of $16,126.67. Receipts for the same period were $11,271.98. Checks were written for $15,068.28 and the October 1 balance was $48,839.82.

Council members present were Rick Buterbaugh, Travis Bard, Mike Chilcote, Lee Rager, Jim Smith, Mack Shaffer, Pat Frazier and Mayor Jim Stenger.

Borough Council meets the first Wednesday of each month at 7:30 p.m. at the Fulton House. The next regular meeting is scheduled for November 4, 2009.

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