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Employee raises in 2013-14 Kershaw budget

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Property taxes, residential water rates to increase

By Jesef Williams

KERSHAW – Town of Kershaw employees will see more money in their paychecks.

On Monday, June 17, Kershaw Town Council unanimously passed final reading of the town’s $3.5 million budget for 2013-14, which includes a 3 percent across-the-board raise for town employees. Town Administrator Bryan Pettit said those salary hikes cost about $25,000 – increasing the budget by about 5.7 percent from 2012-13.

While the town’s 17 employees will get paid more, town residents will pay more in property taxes.

In the new budget, the millage rate increases from 72.1 to 75 mills. Coupled with a slight drop in the tax credit, that equals a $12.30 increase in annual property taxes on a $100,000 owner-occupied home.

Monthly water and sewer rates will each increase by $1 for residential customers within the town limits. The minimum rate for water and sewer will each be $18.50 per month.

Pettit said those changes are a result of Lancaster County Water and Sewer District charging the town more for water.

The town’s commercial water and sewer rates remain unchanged.

The only change since the budget’s first reading is $8,000 that has been moved from the water fund to pay for a salary increase for the town’s two full-time firefighters, who are provided through Lancaster County Fire Service.

The $8,000 covers the increased pay grade, related benefits and equipment.

Other items in the budget include funds to enhance the recreation center at Stevens Park and money to make repairs at the wastewater treatment plant.

Pettit said the town will need to increase the plant’s handling capacity in coming years. For now, repairs will be made when needed.

“We’ve got to increase the capacity down there, which means some major work,” he said.

Overall, he believes the town has a solid budget for 2013-14.

“I think we’re in good shape, barring any unforeseen things happening,” Pettit said.

The new fiscal year begins July 1.

Landscaping request, closed session

At Monday’s meeting, local landscaper Darren Sowell spoke about his wish to perform landscaping for the town. Council didn’t act on his request.

Council members later met in closed session to discuss what was listed on the meeting agenda as personnel issues. No action was taken when council returned to open session.

 

Contact reporter Jesef Williams at (803) 283-1152