The Gettysburg Borough Council approved its new $6.58 million budget on Monday evening. The budget brings tax relief to the borough’s citizens.
Borough Manager Charles Gable said the new property tax rate would be 4.177 mills, which is .232 mills lower than the 2021 rate of 4.409 mills.
The council also approved budgets for fire services, the Community Development Block Fund, capital projects, debt service, capital reserve fund, liquid fuels, revolving loan fund, and the American Rescue Plan funds.
Council member Matt Moon said the budget was “painstakingly crafted” and that the borough manager and borough staff had “put together a comprehensive budget that does five key things:”
- Replenishes and rebuilds cash reserves
- Restores police and other staffing levels to historic levels
- Expands the police budget by about 15 percent
- Invests aggressively in a long-term capital improvement plan
- Provides modest tax relief for borough taxpayers
Council President Wes Heyser thanked the council members and the borough staff saying “in every budget process I’ve participated in you always make concessions from your personal opinion. We have a very good team here who worked very hard to make thoughtful discussions.”
Main Street Gettysburg President and CEO Jill Sellers said the welcome center reconstruction project had received $13,244 from the Giving Spree as well as another $1,000 donation.
Sellers said the 2021 Christmas Festival had been a success with a budget of about $9,000. She thanked volunteers and others who contributed “everything from trash to special parking arrangements.” The benefits of the festival for local businesses were noted as it added several extra weeks to the regular tourist schedule.
Heyser thanked departing council member Nicholas Redman who filled in over the past several months, saying he “really stepped up at a time when we were not expecting to need a councilman. He was a great addition.” Redman thanked the borough and said he would remain involved in local issues. “This has been a fun experience. Everyone has been so welcoming,” he said.
Heyser thanked Mayor Ted Streeter for his service as Gettysburg Mayor. “Ted was a great addition. He really helped us through.”
Heyser said it was difficult to know how to honor him given he already has a key to borough. Streeter was instead given a pen made from a sycamore witness tree from Baltimore Ave. which was donated by an anonymous person.
Streeter said he came on in the council in 1997 when it “consisted of nine old fat white guys, of which I was one. We’ve come a long way. You’re going to have a really truly diverse council that really represents what the spirit of this town is about,” he said.
Council member Judie Butterfield said the next electronic recycling will be on the third Saturday in March.
The council’s 2022 reorganization meeting in which incoming mayor Rita Frealing and incoming council member Chad Alan Carr will be sworn in will be held on Monday Jan 3, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.