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Montco Budget Holds Line On Taxes, Maybe

dollarsThe Montgomery County Commissioners are considering a general fund budget that calls for more than $398.4 million in spending and no tax hike next year, but Chairman Jim Matthews says county workers won’t like it, and the department heads will sue the commissioners. “After all the lawsuits that are going to come, and they will, I don’t see where we have a budget.”

He says he believes all department heads will sue, challenging their spending cuts.  Vice Chairman Joe Hoeffel says county workers will make sacrifices.

“This budget does not anticipate a pay raise.  This is part of the bitter medicine – a zero pay raise.”

Commissioner Bruce Castor says a tax hike is not out of the question.

“I would agree with Commissioner Matthews that we need to consider a tax increase to avoid, I used the word ‘layoffs,’ but really it’s job eliminations.”

He says residents expect county services, and the commissioners should look at every possibility to continue providing them in the most efficient way.  Matthews says what’s going on in Norristown is similar to what’s going on in Washington, but with one important difference.

“It’s a microcosm of what we’ve seen in the federal argument for the last year or so, that is, it’s grand to pass this or that, but where’s the money coming from?  The distinguishing thing that the three of us are painfully familiar with is that we can’t go to the Chinese to raise the money or the Saudi Arabians to raise the money.”

And unlike the federal government, he says the county is required by law to have a balanced budget.  As it stands now, the budget calls for eliminating more than 50 jobs, including about 20 that are currently filled.  The others have been vacant for weeks or months.  The commissioners vote on the budget in three weeks, and a tax hike is still possible.
WNPV AM 1440 As you plan your shopping for Friday ... and Small Business Saturday ... be sure to include some of the locally owned and operated businesses in our area because, according to the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (www.ilsr.org), locally owned businesses create more jobs locally and, in some sectors, provide better wages and benefits than chains do! "Shop Locally for the Holidays!"
Institute for Local Self-Reliance ilsr.org Building Community, Strengthening Economies
WNPV AM 1440 Planning to shop on Friday? How about Small Business Saturday? As you make your plans be sure to include some of the locally owned and operated businesses in the area! According to the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (www.ilsr.org) there are "10 Reasons to Support Locally Owned Businesses." #5: Entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship fuels America's economic innovation and prosperity and serves as a key means for families to move out of low-wage jobs and into the middle class. Shop Locally for the Holidays!
Institute for Local Self-Reliance ilsr.org Building Community, Strengthening Economies
WNPV AM 1440 As you plan your holiday shopping, think about the "Top 10 Reasons to Support Locally Owned Businesses" from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (www.ilsr.org): Public Benefits and Costs. Local stores in town centers require comparatively little infrastructure and make more efficient use of public services relative to big box stores and strip shopping malls.
Institute for Local Self-Reliance ilsr.org Building Community, Strengthening Economies
WNPV AM 1440 As you plan your holiday shopping, think about the "Top 10 Reasons to Support Locally Owned Businesses" from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (www.ilsr.org): Environmental Sustainability. Local stores help to sustain vibrant, compact, walkable town centers which in turn are essential to reducing sprawl, automobile use, habitat loss, and air and water pollution. "Shop Locally for the Holidays!"
Institute for Local Self-Reliance ilsr.org Building Community, Strengthening Economies
WNPV AM 1440 As you plan your holiday shopping, think about the "Top 10 Reasons to Support Locally Owned Businesses" from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (www.ilsr.org): Competition. A marketplace of tens of thousands of small businesses is the best way ensure innovation and low prices over the long-term.
Institute for Local Self-Reliance ilsr.org Building Community, Strengthening Economies
WNPV AM 1440 As you plan your holiday shopping, think about the "Top 10 Reasons to Support Locally Owned Businesses" from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (www.ilsr.org): Product Diversity. A multitude of small businesses, each selecting products based, not on a national sales plan, but on their own interests and the needs of their local customers, guarantees a much broader range of product choices. "Shop Locally for the Holidays."
Institute for Local Self-Reliance ilsr.org Building Community, Strengthening Economies

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