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Borough budget holds line on taxes

December 22, 2005|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Year-end surpluses will make up a $144,000 shortfall in Waynesboro's 2006 budget, but people who work in the borough will have to fork over $52 above their regular tax bill next year, thanks to Borough Council action Wednesday.

The 2006 budget was adopted by the council on a unanimous vote.

The 2006 budget, which goes into effect Jan. 1, calls for revenue of about $3.7 million and expenses of about $3.8 million. That represents a shortage of about $144,000, he said.

The year-end surplus will mean no tax increase for borough residents.

The council also voted to replace a $10-a-year occupational privilege or work tax paid by everyone who works in the borough with a $52 emergency and municipal services tax.

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According to the law that allows the new tax, $5 of the $52 collected will go to the Waynesboro Area School Board and $47 will go to the borough. It will bring in about $155,000 a year to the borough's coffers, Borough Manager Lloyd Hamberger said.

The council voted earlier this month to pay Delmos Oldham, the elected borough tax collector, 3 percent of the total new emergency and municipal services taxes he collects each year.

Oldham, a member of the Waynesboro Area Tax bureau, balked at that offer Monday, saying he wants 5 percent.

He said if the council only pays 3 percent he will have to hire a fourth part-time employee for his tax office at 30 E. Main St. The council will have to foot the bill for the new employee's salary, he said. "If I get 5 percent, I will be willing to go to my office and work on the tax at night," he said after Monday's meeting.

Oldham said the "consensus" among members of the regional tax bureau is that he be paid 5 percent.

At 5 percent, Oldham would get $7,750 for collecting the tax. At 3 percent, his take would be $4,650, a difference of $3,100.

The Waynesboro Area Tax Bureau has representatives from the boroughs of Waynesboro and Mont Alto, Pa., plus Washington and Quincy townships and the Waynesboro Area School Board.

Borough Councilman Harold Mumma represents Waynesboro on the tax bureau.

The council Monday agreed to meet with members of the tax bureau in the Borough Hall on Tuesday to decide how much Oldham should be paid to collect the new tax.

Also to be determined is how taxpayers will pay the bill - all at once at the beginning of the year, quarterly or deducted from regular paychecks.

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