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Verona Council Notebook: Apology, Police Applications & More

Verona Council discussed several topics at its regular October meeting.

Here's a roundup of items discussed at the Verona Council meeting on Tuesday.

Apology

A juvenile who broke a newly-installed community sign at Cribbs Field last month apologized to council for his actions.

“It was an accident," the teenage boy said. "I didn’t mean to break it.”

Council thanked the boy for attending the meeting and expressing remorse. The sign has been repaired.

Tax Collection

Council hired two firms to collect its taxes.

The law offices of Ira Weiss was hired to collect delinquent municipal taxes and real estate fees and Berkheimer Tax Administrator was appointed as the deputy tax collector for current real estate taxes. Berkheimer will replace the Central Tax Bureau, also known as CENTAX.

Officials also are in discussions to hire Oakmont Water Authority to collect delinquent sewer and water charges. They are expected to vote on the matter next month. 

Fees

Council is looking to bring its fees to do business in the borough up-to-date in coming months.

Fees have not been updated for several years and are due for an upgrade, said Councilwoman Rhoda Gemellas-Worf.

In some instances, such as when it’s necessary to use a stenographer, it’s normal for boroughs and municipalities to pass the cost on to applicants. Verona, however, incurs the costs.

All fees will be looked at and most likely be adjusted for next year.

Police

Officials are taking applications for a part-time police officer. An officer hired last month already had taken a full-time position elsewhere, according to officials.

Hoffman Kennels

Councilwoman Peggy Suchevich gave a report on Hoffman Kennels, the borough’s contracted animal control officer.

Hoffman Kennels has faced complaints from a small group of citizens in the western Pennsylvania area, particularly Plum and Murrysville.

Suchevich had nothing bad to say about the kennel, which is located in Delmont.

“I honestly think we’re kind of lucky to have him,” Suchevich said. “Everything from the state, he is completely respectable. There’s not one unsatisfying thing on his state report for the year.”
 
She said Hoffman Kennel’s didn't receive fines from the state last year and recently completed a $100,000 addition that includes air conditioning and heated floors.

The region's only other animal control company, Triangle Pet Control, has had its license recently suspended.

Giving Thanks

Jen Parks of the 600 block of Peter Street gave credit to the police department for the way it handled a break-in that recently occurred at her home.

“They deserve a lot of credit because they worked very hard to capture the man who did it,” she said.

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