2012 Budget Update And Analysis

By David Jones, Former Borough  Council President

Parkesburg’s new budget for 2012 has been advertised and copies are available at Borough Hall for review.

This is a tough budget year everywhere in Pennsylvania, but few municipalities are raising taxes 12.5% as is being proposed in Parkesburg.  For the average homeowner this is approximately $127 per year.

While $10.58 a month doesn’t seem like much for most families, those on fixed incomes will be hard pressed to pay this additional bill.

What about the budget itself?  From this vantage point it’s not too bad on balance.

However, the “very” big question is, can the police stay within the budget they are given.  You have to go way back to the last century to find the last time the police stayed within their allotted budget.  They failed to do this again in 2011.

If they fail to stay within budget in 2012 what will the response of council be?  At some point performance must be critically assessed and someone besides the residents of Parkesburg should be accountable for budget overruns.

In my opinion the reason we have to borrow money to pay our bills in the end of 2011 is due directly to the police spending more money then they were allocated.  Paying back $100,000 with short term interest in 2012 is arguably the “only” reason we have a proposed tax increase next year.  That lies squarely on the shoulders of the police.

Very few residents complain about the fine job the police in Parkesburg do protecting us all and there is a cost associated with that, but at some point you either have to do a better job of projecting your budget needs or council has to take control and do it for all of us.

For more information on the budget or to express your opinion about this year’s budget attend the Finance Committee meeting at 7:00 PM on December 8th at Borough Hall or the next Council meeting at 7:00 PM on December 19th.

Make your voice heard!

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