Frere advises council of possible overpayment of tax distributions
, 2014

Frere advises council of possible
overpayment of tax distributions

WHITE STONE—Town manager Patrick Frere told the town council last Thursday that his upcoming meeting with county officials was going to be “a fact-finding mission.”

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Frere was scheduled to meet with Lancaster County Treasurer Bonnie Haynie Friday to discuss a miscalculation in the amount of local sales taxes distributed to the town since July 1, 2010. Frere told council he expected to be told the town needs to return the overpayment to the county.

Sales tax distributions are based on the population of school-age children living in the town.

“They are sending us the money. We don’t have anything to do with it,” said Mayor Lloyd B. Hubbard.

According to Frere, the 2010 census showed a significant decrease in school-age population among White Stone residents over the previous 10 years. From 2000 to 2010, there was an 11.07% decrease in children ages 5-9, a 23.01% percent decrease in children ages 10-14 and a 12.89% decrease in children ages 15-19.

Frere told council there are two variables that would affect current and future budgets, including the overpayment that may have to be returned and a decrease in previously projected sales tax receipts.

“It will be a change from this point forward,” he said.

Although Frere explained he didn’t have all the facts yet and would learn more at his meeting, several board members voiced concern.

“In order to get the money [back],” said councilman Joe Sliakis, “it’s going to have to be more than a please.”

Mayor Hubbard told council, “It is what it is and we’ll have to cross that bridge when we get there.”

In other business, Frere told council he had spoken with representatives from Aqua Virginia and the town of Irvington about a proposed joint meeting on November 8. Residents and council will address the water company about concerns including water quality and odor.

Frere said he had not heard back from Irvington about the meeting. Town attorney Matson Terry, who also serves Irvington’s town council, said Irvington did not “seem particularly anxious to have a joint meeting.

“I told them it would be a lot more effective to have two towns chewing on them instead of one,” he added.

Following an executive session, council voted unanimously to hire Kevin Dawson as a part-time police officer. Councilman Randy Reeves made the motion and Jennifer Hodges seconded it. Voting to hire Dawson were Reeves, Hodges, Sliakis, Will Hubbard, Irving Brittingham and Blair Kenyon.

Frere also told council during his monthly report the town had received a grant of $1,203 for Litter Prevention and Recycling Program activities. According to Frere, it was an increase over last year’s grant.

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