Manchester budget process draws criticism NORTH--Manchester * Hampstead * Lineboro

April 14, 1993|By Katherine Richards | Katherine Richards,Staff Writer

The Manchester budget process drew stinging public comment at last night's regular council meeting, and a candidate for the Town Council forced a delay in a public hearing so the proposed budget could be advertised.

During the public comment period of an otherwise quiet meeting, Mayor Earl A. J. "Tim" Warehime and the council agreed to move the public hearing on tax rates and water and sewer rates from April 28 to May 11 after council candidate Kathryn Riley said the town's code requires the budget hearing to be advertised in a local newspaper two weeks in advance.

The April 28 meeting has not yet been advertised.

Mrs. Riley also offered what she said were "only suggestions" on how to save money in the budget.

She said the draft budget lists more than $60,000 in the town's checking account, and more than $177,000 in its money market account. "Possibly there's some money in there that they can use," before they raise taxes, she said after the meeting.

Mrs. Riley questioned some proposed expenditures, such as $500 for election expenses when no election is scheduled.

Doris Minnich, another resident, said she opposes adding tipping fees to residents' utility bills.

"If I have to pay a tipping fee," she said, "I'm not going to bother to recycle."

A heated exchange between residents Helen Bankert and Pat Wallman took place after Ms. Bankert blasted newer developments such as Whispering Valley.

Councilman Geoffrey Black tried to strike a chord of unity.

After the meeting, Mrs. Wallman said some long-time residents "don't realize that we're local people, too. They act like we're Martians . . . "

Ms. Bankert also asked if Town Manager Terry Short has asked for a pay increase.

Mayor Warehime said the council is considering 3 percent pay raises for all its employees, plus performance raises. The council would then discuss other raises, he said.

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