Saturday, January 03, 2009

City coffers to be audited

Investigation of a past administration financial activities? It couldn't come sooner? By the way, don't ignore current administration and council's holding a meeting and not allowing anybody to comment prior to taking action on a new budget and an increase in taxes. That's ok, the council members met on the Wednesday New Year's Eve! And thanks, allowed people to comment. Then, members re-voted on the motion they'd already passed.

Sure, dozens of people attended the former meeting, but not nearly that amount attended New Year's Eve meeting just before dinnertime. Sad to say, the individual who initially complained and filed accordingly said all was ok since a few people were allowed to comment after-the-fact.

Lawsuit against Uniontown council dropped after revote

A Fayette County man who sued the city of Uniontown for an alleged violation of the state's Sunshine Act has dropped the civil action.

City resident Gary Gearing filed the suit in late December after council failed to solicit public comment when it passed a tax increase and took other actions at a Dec. 20 meeting. Through his attorney, John Purcell, Gearing alleged that council erred when it failed to allow for public comment before it voted on the measures.

Gearing filed notice Jan. 2 of his intention to discontinue the civil action.

Suit seeks to nullify Uniontown tax hike

A Fayette County man filed a civil lawsuit Monday seeking to nullify a tax increase in Uniontown because city council failed to take public comment before voting on it, but the action may have been moot before it was even filed.

According to Uniontown Mayor Ed Fike, council gave notice yesterday that it will hold a special meeting at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday at city hall to take public comment on matters that were approved at an earlier meeting Dec. 20.

At the Dec. 20 meeting, council passed a 2009 budget that includes a 4.5-mill tax increase.

Uniontown tax hike passed; lawsuit shelved
A Fayette County man said he plans to drop a civil lawsuit filed Monday seeking to nullify a 4.5-mill real estate tax increase in Uniontown because he and other city residents were allowed to comment on the hike at a city council meeting held Wednesday.

City resident Gary Gearing alleged in the suit filed by attorney John M. Purcell that council violated the Sunshine Act by failing to allow public comment prior to passing the city's 2009 budget at a meeting Dec. 20.

Though council, which held yesterday's special meeting to revote on the budget and other matters, adopted the $8.3 million spending plan and accompanying tax increase by a 4-1 vote, Gearing said he was satisfied he and others had a say beforehand.

Disappointing bunch. Sader still, many of the employees laid off and others could be shown as unnecessary to running city government. They're non-essential employees, in other words. (Except for police, fire department, how many secretaries, consultants, etc. are needed?)

How many employees in city government does it take to run city services for around 13,000 city residents?

Net the Truth Online

Uniontown city books may get state audit

By Mary Pickels
Saturday, January 3, 2009

...Vernon said her office has received numerous complaints from various sources regarding previous administration actions that led Fike to declare the city "bankrupt" last fall.

She said rumors included payroll padding, ghost employees, misapplication of state grants and theft...

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