Archived Story

SPSA proposes budget

Published 10:26pm Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Southeastern Public Service Authority plans to give its employees a 2-percent raise even as projected revenues for the coming year are falling, the board learned in its Wednesday meeting in Chesapeake.

Municipal solid waste has fallen 27 percent since 2005 and is continuing to decline. About 91 percent of the trash authority’s budget comes from tipping fees charged per ton of waste delivered.

SPSA Executive Director Rowland Taylor said Thursday that the drop is attributable to many factors — a struggling economy, which means consumers buying less have less product packaging to throw away; more ecologically friendly packaging; and recycling programs. Portsmouth is preparing to institute a recycling program, which will cut tonnages even more, Taylor said.

“Yes, it’s a concern, but we’re hoping it continues about the same level of where we are now,” Taylor said.

The $42-million budget also includes a 2-percent cost of living increase, to help offset the fact that employees had to absorb a Social Security tax increase, as well as a net increase of one full-time equivalent position.

Taylor said two new employees have been hired in recent months to help cut overtime costs at transfer stations when other employees go on vacation. The two employees work at whatever transfer station needs them that day, Taylor said. Reductions elsewhere meant the net increase was only one position.

Health insurance premiums for employees are also set to decrease.

The authority still holds about $34.6 million in outstanding debt. No tipping fee increase is proposed for the coming year. The fee currently stands at $125, but Suffolk pays no fee in exchange for hosting the regional landfill.

“The budget appears to be a very good plan of action for the coming year,” Taylor said.

The authority’s board could approve the plan as early as its April 24 meeting, but it could get delayed to its May 22 meeting.

To view the full budget document, go to www.spsa.com and click on the budget link on the right-hand side of the page.

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  • Norseman

    Did the last shakeup result in Va Beach and the rest paying the same fees or are the still enjoying a reduced rate? Any city that plays active hostshould have a reduced or free tipping fee due to the problems involved with being th host. They should be shouting thanks we dont have to build a new facility so fast and then reduce through attrition as much as possible. If you run a buisness that has one revenue stream and that one is dwindling with no growth in the mix then you cut back and retrench ( UNLESS YOU ARE RUN BY GOVT MANAGERS)

    Suggest Removal

  • whitemarshtaxpayer

    All one needs to do is go back and read the financial history of this outfit …. People should be in jail . There are millions of unaccounted for money … GEEZ

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  • Roger Leonard

    No company or program I ever managed, could sustain a reduction in income and an escalating budget and costs. This is the type of mismanagement that got SPSA into trouble to begin with. Mr Taylor, are you off your rocker? If you propose cost increases and pay raises for whatever reason, if your income is dropping (by way of tipping fees, your only revenue stream that matters), then you must contain costs not elevate them and give pay raises…

    Look for more problems from SPSA in the future. It is time that Suffolk look at other options, or at least stand up and state the obvious, that with revenue projected to fall, spending cannot increase… This is just basic economic management, or did our Rep on SPSA and the all knowing and mighty City Manager fail that course in graduate school?

    Suggest Removal

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