SHARON City council restores job title, tax clerk position

The receiver of taxes said her office is falling behind in its paperwork and needs help.
SHARON, Pa. -- City council will restore a job title and a tax clerk position that was eliminated when the final version of the 2002 budget was adopted.
Council, trying to cut spending while enacting a $7.9 million spending plan that required a 3.5-mill property tax increase, had cut a captain detective's position as well as a wage tax clerk position.
On Thursday, council voted to restore the rank of captain detective to the police department but not to restore that particular position. It cut one detective slot.
The budget cut reduced the number of detectives to three and that number will remain with one of the detectives taking the rank of captain.
The change will cost only $2,179, the difference in rank between a detective and a captain, said Mayor David O. Ryan.
The detective bureau needs a ranking officer to coordinate investigations, he said.
Plea for third clerk: Council also heard a plea from Stephanie Nitch, city receiver of taxes, for a third clerk for her office.
The office did have a third, part-time person until last August but the job was vacant for the remainder of the year.
The original version of the 2002 budget called for the position to be filled again and a clerk was hired in December but never actually started work.
Council, arguing that the office had been able to function without a third person for four months, cut the job from the budget.
Nitch told council that her office is falling behind on its paperwork and another clerk is needed to go after delinquent taxes as well as wage taxes being held by other municipalities where Sharon residents work.
Michael Gasparich, city finance director, said filling the job would cost about $20,000 in salary and benefits but that the money is available in the budget as part of the 3.5-mill tax increase.
Council indicated it will grant Nitch's request and Gasparich said the job will probably be offered to the person hired to do it in December.
Also on agenda: In other business, council gave its support to a proposal by Ryan to terminate a contract with L.T. Boccia of Niles for the demolition of 11 dilapidated houses in the city.
Boccia was to be paid $24,600 for the work which was to be finished by now but has only torn down seven or eight houses, Ryan said.
The company has violated the time constraints of the contract and the city code office has problems with the caliber of the work that was done, Ryan said.
No money has been paid to Boccia. Atty. William Madden, city solicitor, said Sharon will go after Boccia's bonding company to cover the cost of having someone else complete the work.

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