Collier officials approved a $6.3 million budget for 2013 Dec. 12, but held off on setting the accompanying millage rate because of a recent decision regarding the court-ordered county reassessment.
On Dec. 10, Common Pleas Court Senior Judge R. Stanton Wettick ordered the county assessment office to provide "a final and revised" assessment roll of the latest assessment by Friday. He also ruled that taxing bodies do not have to set a millage rate until June 15, 2013, or 10 days before the expected mailing of tax bills, whichever occurs earlier.
Though Collier had advertised to take action on the 2013 millage last week, Solicitor Charles Means advised the township hold off until release of the new assessment data.
"If we tried to set any millage tonight, we would not be using the final numbers," he said.
At his recommendation, officials continued last week's meeting until 7 p.m. Jan. 9.
Though the proposed budget is up 3.8 percent over the current year, officials hope to retain the 3.5 millage rate that has been in place since 2003.
Included in the tentative budget is expected approval of an agreement with eTrak-Plus that would provide web-based services such as league schedules, activity registrations, court reservations and locker rentals for the township's recreation programs.
Board President Robert Schuler said the township expects to invest another $5.5 million into the continued development of the new park at the former Nike Site, as well as make improvements to other parks. Consideration is being given to development of a dog park, too.
Also, approximately 10 acres at the new park may be given to Collier Township Firefighters Association to facilitate training and communication among the three volunteer fire departments.
In other matters:
• Board members accepted the retirement resignation of Roberta Schmitt, who has been a township secretary for 17 years.
Commissioner Kay Downey-Clarke thanked Mrs. Schmitt for her service, and Mr. Schuler commented, "There were some wild assignments given to her over these years."
Valerie Salla, who has been serving as assistant secretary since January, was named as her replacement at an annual salary of $43,000. Mrs. Schmitt will work temporarily as part-time employee during the changeover.
Also, the retirement resignation of Stanley Yablonski, longtime supervisor of public works, was accepted, effective Dec. 12. Mr. Yablonski worked for Collier for more than 40 years.
• Collier residents are receiving blue recycling bins for the collection of co-mingled recyclables starting Jan. 1.
The township has signed a five-year agreement with Republic Services Inc. on Noblestown Road. Manager Sal Sirabella did not give any figures.
"This contract is a major item in this year's budget," Mr. Sirabella said, adding that rates the township will be paying in five years are less than today's costs.
He also said that the cooperation of all residents is vital. Some residents may see a change in pick-up dates. Four days will be scheduled to pick up recyclables.
Some acceptable recyclables for co-mingling include glass bottles, cans, egg cartons, newspaper, box board and plastic bottles. Items that are not acceptable are diapers, plastic wrap, plastic foam such as Styrofoan, window glass and dishes.
More information and the pick-up schedule will be mailed to homes.
Carole Gilbert Brown, freelance writer: email@example.com.