Two Killington department budgets up double digits
By Cristina Kumka
STAFF WRITER | November 26,2012
KILLINGTON — The three-man Select Board will hear from Second Constable Whit Montgomery Tuesday on his requested 21 percent budget increase for town police services in 2013, as well as fire officials, who also have a budget increase in the double digits for the volunteer department.
Employee health benefits, which are expected to cost the town 4 percent less, and projected 2 percent cost of living increases for town employees, will also be discussed.
The total 2013 town budget is up 2 percent, or $87,639, for a total spending plan of $3,846,128.
The presentations by department heads have been a growing tradition of the board over the last three budget seasons as they attempt to decide what needs to stay and what needs to go in specific spending plans.
The board has not revealed specific budget goals.
But all three members have agreed that special events and marketing are more of a town function than a designated department and those costs have been spread to other town departments.
Town Manager Seth Webb is proposing to reconfigure the health care plan for town employees which would also curb the costs to the town.
At a recent meeting, Webb said employees didn’t see much of their 2.2 percent average increase in base pay for cost of living adjustments in 2011 because they had to start paying 25 percent of their deductible health insurance costs.
Webb is now weighing Social Security and new municipal health care mandates in the plan he will present Tuesday at the board’s regular meeting at 7:30 p.m. in the town offices.
Members of the Killington Fire & Rescue are also expected to ask for a 33 percent increase in their budget compared to this year, with the largest reported increases in insurance, new equipment and an additional $75,000 in capital reserve funds.
The increase amounts to $91,800 more than in 2012, for a total fire budget of $368,437.
Selectman Jim Haff recently proposed contracting with the department for their services for the first time, to lay out specific duties and cost.
Haff told the board last week that he would check with the Vermont League of Cities & Towns for the legality behind it.
The constable budget is up 21 percent, or $14,050, for a total of $79,500.
The largest increase is in salaries and wages, up more than $8,000, and a new $9,000 capital expense for police cruisers.