Faith approves $590K budget, discusses rising water bills

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 12, 2013

FAITH — The town of Faith unanimously approved its budget for 2013-14 at Tuesday’s board meeting.
No one spoke at a public hearing prior to the vote.
Under the $590,265 budget, the town’s tax rate will remain the same, and no money will be appropriated from the fund balance.
General government and administration accounts for $192,000 of the town’s expenses, and about $262,000 will pay for public safety costs. The town has also budgeted about $42,000 for transportation, $46,500 for environmental protection, $7,500 for culture and recreation and $40,000 for debt service and reserve.
The town expects to bring in about $255,000 in the current year’s property taxes and another $122,000 in local option sales taxes, among other revenues.
Also at Tuesday’s meeting, the Faith town board:
• Discussed an increase in the town’s water bills from Salisbury-Rowan Utilities. Town Clerk Karen Fink said the most recent bill was nearly double the normal amount – from between $8,000 and $9,000 to about $16,000 – without a large increase in water consumption. She said there isn’t enough money in the current budget to cover what the town is being billed.
The public utility company says the flow meter could be impacted by infiltration from heavy rains, but town aldermen say Faith’s highest bills don’t correspond with the most rainy months.
Aldermen agreed to ask for meter readings from the past 12 months and to see if the meter can be inspected.
• Discussed the town’s street dance, which will take place at 7 p.m. on June 22 on Main Street. The event is sponsored by the town merchants of Faith, and the Nightshadow band will be performing from 7 to 11 p.m.
• Heard a reminder about the summer fan prgram for seniors sponsored by Rufty-Holmes.
Rowan County residents who are at least 60 years of age or disabled can call 704-216-7702 to request a free box fan for summer heat relief. The program is designed for those who don’t have air conditioning and have financial need.

Contact reporter Karissa Minn at 704-797-4222.