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Pierrepont approves preliminary budget with modifications

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PIERREPONT — The Town Council approved a preliminary $1.9 million budget for 2014 during a public hearing Monday, after making a few last-minute alterations.

Among the changes were 2 percent pay raises for the highway superintendent and town justice.

Highway Superintendent Shawn D. Spellacy now earns $59,956, while Justice Robert B. Camp’s salary is $12,576.

The preliminary budget totals $1,905,025.

The spending plan, not including Monday night’s modifications, shows the general fund at $570,822, $1,169,703 for the highway department, $16,500 for the lighting district and $148,000 for the fire district.

The tax levies for the four funds show increases of 2.64 percent, 3.4 percent, 3.57 percent and 1.17 percent, respectively.

Colton Hepburn Library board trustee Nancy Fisher asked the board to maintain funding for the facility at its current level.

“We’re hoping you will give us $500 this year like you did last year. Some people think maybe they’re taxed twice because of the school. I just wanted to let you know that the school tax rate for Pierrepont is only .051 (cents) per $1,000” of assessed value, Ms. Fisher said. “In other words, if you have property that’s assessed at $100,000, the tax from the school from the library is only $5.10, and that’s not very much. ... So if we could get at least $500 it would help (a lot).”

Town Supervisor Thomas E. Latimer said the board budgeted the library in for $400.

“The reason being is because we have four school districts in the town of Pierrepont, and we don’t give any of the other towns, their libraries (any money.) You’re the only district that we do give (some) to. We do hope that the money will help,” Mr. Latimer said.

One significant jump in the preliminary 2014 budget is the retirement fund. The 2013 allotment for this section was $92,072, while 2014’s is scheduled to increase to $154,850. Town officials did not give a reason for the jump, but said they believe other towns such as Clare were also increasing their retirement numbers.

The proposed salaries of elected officials in Pierrepont are:

n Supervisor, $13,500.

n Council members (four at $4,662), $18,648

n Town clerk/tax collector, $33,163

n Justice, $12,702

n Highway superintendent, $60,658

Councilman Roger H. Murray moved to approve the preliminary budget with the modifications. Dahl R. McCormick seconded the motion.

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