Reynoldsville council re-convenes to talk about budget problems

On January 9, the Reynoldsville Borough Council re-convened a meeting that was begun with reorganization on January 9. The biggest item on the agenda was the 2020 budget.

According to Borough Secretary Jackie Dixon, the problem was discovered when she was reporting budget figures to the state. She discovered there was problem with the taxes. She also stated that there is a difference in how the tax ordinances are advertised as opposed to regular ordinances, making the 2020 tax ordinances invalid.

Council member John Burkett made the motion to reopen the 2020 budget with Robin McMillan seconding the motion. It was approved unanimously with two council members, Ralph “Tucker” August, and Billy Cebulskie absent.

In making the motion, Burkett stated that “we need to take a look at [the budget] from top to bottom while we have it open.”

Borough Solicitor Joe Ryan told council they have the right as a new council to amend the budget in January. It must be properly advertised and adopted by February 15.

Council president Bill Cebulskie called for a work session on Monday, January 13 at 6:30 p.m. to review what needs to be done. To that end, council just recessed the meeting until Monday night’s session. The next regular council meeting is scheduled for January 15 at 6:00 p.m. and Cebulskie said he was hoping they would have more information to provide on the budget at that time.

In other action, Cebulskie provided a form that listed council committee assignments. He mentioned forming a new committee of council members and borough residents. He called it the Citizen Awareness Committee. Part of the committee’s work would be to choose a person to be honored as the citizen of the month. More information will be provided on that once the committee is formed and begins its work.

Council approved a Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance (LERTA) request from the One Stop Convenience Store on Main Street. The One Stop was destroyed by a fire last January but has since been rebuilt and reopened. Because of that, it qualifies for the 10-year tax relief program.

Sharing resources with other municipalities was also a topic of discussion. The borough is interested in working with Winslow Township for the use of its grader when needed while Sykesville requested the use of the borough’s street sweeper. Bell Township once used the borough’s sweeper at a cost of $100.00 an hour. Council approved a motion to set that amount as the official renting cost for other municipalities.

Council member Darren Scolese discussed problems with the sidewalk in front of McCabe’s Drug Store and said the repairs will have to wait until the construction season in the spring.  Council member McMillan informed the everyone that January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Passages, Inc., will hold an event on that topic on January 30 at 6:30 p.m. at the Reynoldsville Fire Hall on Jackson Street. It’s free and open to the public.

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