Regional police balance budget

FARRELL, Pa. -- The Southwest Mercer County Regional Police Department ended 2000 with $108,000 in the bank but had to rely on the 1999 year-end balance to do it.
An audit report presented to the police commission Tuesday by the accounting firm of Black, Bashor and Porsch showed that the department took in $1,157,218 from various sources but spent $1,192,374, showing a deficit of $35,156.
The department, however, had ended 1999 with $143,869 in the bank, and that more than offset the 2000 budget deficit, leaving the department with $108,713 as of Dec. 31, 2000.
Police contract: In other business, commission Chairman James DeCapua said the department is closer to reaching a new contract with its Fraternal Order of Police, although the FOP has filed a request with the state for binding arbitration to settle the pact.
Robert Tesone, attorney for the commission, said the filing was a formality. The FOP was under a time deadline imposed by state law and had to file for binding arbitration by today or lose the right to request it.
He also said the two sides are close and could settle a contract with one more bargaining session.

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