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Funkstown Council talks trash, sewer rates and budget

June 15, 2009|By MARLO BARNHART

FUNKSTOWN -- The mayor and half of the Funkstown Council met Monday night to ponder three trash pickup bids and refine the 2010 fiscal year budget in anticipation of the June 29 special meeting when the budget will be formally approved.

Councilman John Phillips III voted to table the awarding of the trash contract, with Councilwoman Sharon Chirgott and Councilman Jerry Walker in agreement.

The three bids were from Key Sanitation of Frederick, $91,769.76; Greenscape, $76,203.20; and Allied Waste at $76,280.80.

Allied has the current contract with the town. The new bid for the 2010 fiscal year shows no increase.

Still, the town is planning to raise trash pickup rates for residents in the coming fiscal year, mainly to bring the cost more in line with what is recouped from customers.

Town Clerk Brenda Haynes said she believes the best course for the town to take is to raise the current $30 per quarter for trash pickup to $36 per quarter. That would trim the town's loss to about $10,000 a year.

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At the June 8 regular meeting, Haynes presented the council members with several budget models, one with a 5 percent increase in water rates and another with a 5 percent increase in sewer rates.

Walker said Monday that he would favor a 5 percent sewer rate increase coupled with the $24 annual jump in trash fees at a rate of $6 per quarter.

As for the sewer rate, a 5 percent increase would translate into a quarterly increase for in-town users of $3.25; out-of-town customers would see a $4.35 increase, Haynes said.

"We need the increase in the sewer rate more than the others," Haynes said at the June 8 meeting.

At the June 29 special meeting, the public will be able to speak about the proposed rate increases.

Haynes said a public hearing will be held at a later date.

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