After 20 hours of budget hearings and weeks of deliberations, City Council is expected to cast its final budget vote at tonight's meeting at 7.
Bethlehem City Council is expected to adopt a budget for 2013 spending and revenues – and a new real estate tax rate – during a meeting at 7 tonight in Town Hall. After weeks of deliberations between the mayor, council members and other key stakeholders and about 20 hours of budget hearings, here is what you need to know about the 2013 Bethlehem budget:
With garbage collection issue settled, Bethlehem City Council votes to increase real estate taxes by 7 percent; rejects mayor's proposal to cut their health benefits.
Bethlehem City Council on Monday night voted to kill Mayor John Callahan’s proposal to hire – by the end of 2013 – a single hauler to cart away residential garbage. In its final budget hearing of the season, council also voted in favor of a 7 percent real estate tax hike. That is lower than the 8.5 percent increase Callahan initially suggested in the budget proposal he made on Nov. 9. Callahan came to the last budget session armed with a proposal to cut the tax hike to 5.1 percent, but council rejected the mayor’s tax proposal along with a couple of new administration proposals for budget cuts – such as an elimination of health care benefits for City Council members. In rejecting the mayor’s controversial proposal for a single-hauler …