Voters to decide on fire tax rate in Tower City

By Rob Wheary, Staff

TOWER CITY – Borough council will direct its solicitor to put the question of a three-mill tax increase on the ballot. When it will appear is another question.
At council’s meeting Monday evening, the board unanimously voted to direct the borough’s solicitor, Richard Thornburg, to begin petitioning the Schuylkill County Board of Elections to have a question put on the ballot, hopefully for the fall.
Last month, council member and volunteer firefighter Marcus Riddell reported on the financial condition of the fire company and how they are working with old equipment. Riddell said Monday that the firefighters would be happy with a 2-mill increase.
“Two mills would generate approximately $20,000, that would give the fire company $10,000 to help pay their bills and $10,000 to put away to save for future purchases,” Riddell said. Thornburg told council the minimum tax increase eligible to be on the ballot is three mills, so that is what will be asked for. Mayor Dan Daub questioned on whether a municipal ballot question can be put on during a presidential election year, and Thornburg said he would research the matter. Council president Bruce Schneck cautioned the firefighters to inform the public about the increase.

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