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Funkstown residents to see water rate increase

April 29, 2013|By DAVE McMILLION | davem@herald-mail.com

FUNKSTOWN — Funkstown residents are not expected to see property tax rate increases in the coming fiscal year but a proposed budget for the period includes passing along a 6.5 percent water rate increase to town residents, town officials said Monday.

Funkstown Mayor Paul N. Crampton Jr. and council members met in a workshop meeting at town hall Monday night to review the proposed budget for the 2013-2014 fiscal year.

Last year, council members passed a 10 percent water rate increase.

The 10 percent water rate increase was intended to cover a 6.5 percent increase the City of Hagerstown is imposing on Funkstown as part of a five-year plan to raise wholesale water rates to towns as Hagerstown looks to cover general inflation, operating costs and several major projects for its water system.

The town is facing a 6.5 percent water rate hike from Hagerstown in the coming fiscal year and the budget plan is to pass that increase to town residents, Crampton said.

Council member Rich Gaver pointed out how much money the town is paying for legal expenses in the proposed budget, noting the amount is more than the town spends on the mayor’s position. Gaver said he was merely pointing out how much money the town is spending on legal fees and that he was not saying anything about the quality of the town’s legal service.

Crampton said there are no salary increases in the proposed budget and that the town is trying to hold the line on expenditures in the spending plan, which totals about $1 million.

“There is no fat in this budget at all. We got this thing down about as far as it can go,” Crampton said.

Crampton and the council will hold a public hearing on the proposed budget on May 21 at 6 p.m. at town hall.

Crampton said the proposed budget is expected to come before council on June 10 for a possible vote.

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