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Weissport mayor breaks tie, budget doesn't pass

Published December 02. 2009 05:00PM

Weissport 's budget will have to go back to the planning stages.

Weissport Council met in a special session on Monday to formally adopt the 2010 budget, which had been tentatively adopted on Nov. 2 with no tax increase. The millage is 8.9 mills, which is the same total as last year's milage.

Council anticipates receipts of $144,211.33 in 2010.

Monday night's meeting focused on funds not allocated for police department training.

Allocated for police was: police department wages, $13,000; police department clerk wages, $1,000; police department office supplies, $200; police department Pa. Crimes Code books, $250; police department fuel, $2,000; police department uniforms, $200; police department miscellaneous expenses, $100; police department vehicle repairs/maintenance, $1,500; police department calibration services, $300; police department car washes, $250; police department telephone, $100; police department radio equipment maintenance, $930; police department auto insurance, $2,001; police department workers' compensation insurance, $2,100; police department dues, $100; and EMS Telecommunications Services (911) $1,062.

While the list seems comprehensive, according to Mayor Tina Hagenbuch, the budget lists nothing for police training. She insisted that because the budget did not list cost of training for police officers as a line item, she would veto the 2010 budget.

After a roll-call vote, there was a tie. Council members Tommy McEvilly and Steve Mansueto voted against adoption, while Shannon McAward, president; and Arland Moyer voted for the budget. That gave Hagenbuch the opportunity to be the tie breaker.

Just before the motion was made to adopt the budget, Hagenbuch had presented a letter from Major John Gallaher, executive director of the Municipal Police Officers' Education and Training Commission that explained that the Commission will be unable to provide any reimbursements for training for police officers in the current fiscal year which began July 1, 2009. For Weissport, that means that there would be no reimbursement to the academy for police officers to attend the 12 hours of annual mandatory in-service training which is currently set by the Commission at $59.40 or $14.85 for each three hour class.

According to the letter from Gallaher, the Commission voted to allow the academy to collect payment directly from municipalities that had previously been prohibited.

Weissport will have to readvertise the budget meeting.

According to borough secretary Dana Brubaker, legal costs to advertise the budget meeting held Monday was $260. The borough will incur additional legal fees and advertising fees to readvertise adoption of the budget.

Mansueto noted that he has made arrangements to have decals placed on both police cars at a cost of $589. The cost for the decals will be paid by remaining grant funds that must be used by the police department.

When questioned about the need for the decalling, Mansueto said, "I want the cars to look the same, so they don't look like different Match Box cars in a box."

Council also met in executive session to vote to hire Dennis Moser as a borough worker.

McAward noted that since she is leaving council in the new year, that Council will have to appoint a person to represent Weissport on the Lehigh Canal Commission. She said she will not be living in Weissport, but offered to remain as the representative. She also noted that someone will also have represent Weissport on the Central Carbon Comprehensive Plan Commission.

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