Meeting Minutes May 12, 2010

Centre County Tax Collection Committee Meeting
Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
7:00 PM

I. Call to Order
The Wednesday, May 12th meeting of the Centre County Tax Collection Committee (CCTCC)
was called to order at 7:03 PM with Randy Brown, Chair, presiding.
The meeting began with the Pledge of Allegiance.

II. Roll Call
Mr. Donald Holderman will serve as recording secretary in Mr. Ralph Stewart’s absence for the
meeting until a secretary is elected. Mr. Holderman called the roll. Mr. Holderman stated that a
quorum was present.

Present: Bald Eagle Area School District; Bellefonte Area School District; Bellefonte Borough;
Benner Township; Boggs Township; Centre Hall Borough; College Township; Ferguson
Township; Gregg Township; Halfmoon Township; Harris Township; Huston Township; Marion
Township; Miles Township; Milesburg Borough; Millheim Borough; Patton Township; Penn
Township; Penns Valley Area School District; Potter Township; Snow Shoe Township; Spring
Township; State College Borough; State College Area School District; Unionville Borough;
Walker Township; Worth Township.

Absent: Burnside Township; Haines Township; Howard Borough; Howard Township; Port
Matilda Borough; Snow Shoe Borough; Union township

III. Approval of Minutes
There was a question on the draft meeting minutes dated March 24, 2010 regarding the
percentage amount as stated on Page 4. Because of the necessity to recalculate the
percentage, the approval will be tabled until the next CCTCC meeting.

IV. Report from Committee Chairperson
Mr. William MacMath made a motion to accept the resignation of Mr. Thomas Fountaine as
Secretary of the TCC. Mr. Jefrey Wall seconded the motion. A voice vote was unanimous to
approve the motion.

Ms. Amy Farkas made a motion to nominate Ms. Kim Wyatt, Patton Township, for the position
of Secretary and Public Records Officer. Mr. George Haynes seconded the motion.

Mr. Mark Kunkle nominated Mr. Adam Brumbaugh, College Township, for the position of
Secretary and Public Records Officer. Ms. Susan Steele seconded the motion.

Mr. Jefrey Wall made a motion to close the nominations for Secretary and Public Records
Officer. Ms. Sharon Royer seconded the motion. A voice vote was unanimous.

Written ballots were requested by Mr. Kunkle for the vote. Appointees are required to write the
municipality name on the ballot as well as the person to whom the vote is cast. The results are
as follows: Ms. Wyatt – 83%; Mr. Brumbaugh – 17%; 1 abstention. Ms. Wyatt will begin her
duties as Secretary and Public Records Officer following this meeting.

Items prepared for TCC business are:
Agenda planning
Ethics Commission filings
Investigating Shared Municipal Services program matching grant through DCED – The
grant application has been submitted and accepted. DCED is in the process of finalizing
the application.
Tax Appeal Board –
MOU working towards an agreement with the State College Borough for Tax Collection
Tax Collection Agreement purchase from the PASBO organization.

V. Financial Report
Mr. Brown referenced a copy of the Profit and Loss statement through the period of April 30,
2010. Mr. Wall made a motion to accept the financial report as presented. Ms. Farkas
seconded the motion. A voice vote was unanimous to approve the motion.

VI. Old Business
The State Ethics Commission notified the TCC the collection of the statement of financial
interest forms from TCC delegates and alternates was due by May 1, 2010.

VII. Other Business
A. Tax Appeal Board: Act 32 calls for the TCC to appoint a Tax Appeal Board by June 1,
2010. Article VII of the bylaws includes the criteria for a tax appeal board. If a taxpayer
is disputing something in the earned income tax law or procedures they would appeal to
the Tax Appeal Board. The tax appeal board shall be comprised of three regular
members and two alternate members appointed by the board. Volunteers or
nominations are: William MacMath (volunteer); Thomas Rodkey (volunteer); Robert
Long (nominated by Tom Fountaine). Alternates: David VanBuskirk; Patrick Leary.

Ms. Wyatt made a motion to accept the five nominations. Mr. Newman seconded the
motion. A voice vote was unanimous to accept the motion.

B. Tax Collection Services: At the March meeting, the TCC officers were given direction
to begin negotiations with the State College Borough to enter into an agreement for
providing tax collection services to the Centre County TCC. The result of the
negotiations is provided in the draft MOU document provided. The officers do not view
the document as the tax collection agreement, but to serve as the summary of the
significant points from which an agreement could be drafted. Mr. Stewart, Bellefonte
Borough, did not participate in these discussions since the proposal offers an option that
may include the Borough of Bellefonte along with the Borough of State College.

The intent of the officers is to present this document for review and discussion with the
TCC membership. If there is sufficient support of this process, the officers will continue
further work on the components of the MOU. The solicitor, Mr. Marshall, has reviewed
the document. The TCC members are encouraged to share the MOU with respective
boards and councils. Comments following this meeting should be submitted in writing at
the meeting of June 17, 2010 for further consideration by the TCC. The MOU will be a
discussion item at that meeting as well.

When there is sufficient support of the details of the MOU, the officers are open to a vote
of acceptance by the TCC membership. Following acceptance of the MOU, the officers
would ask the TCC for authorization to prepare the Tax Collection Agreement with the
State College Borough.

There is a model agreement available for purchase from the Pennsylvania Association of
School Business Officials at a cost of $3,500.00 with the potential of further cost
reduction. The cost of the document was included in the Shared Municipal Services
grant application with the DCED. Several TCC’s across the state have purchased the
document to serve as a basis for preparing the Tax Collection Agreement with a
collector. If the purchase is authorized by the TCC, the officers and the solicitor would
have the agreement available to use in developing the MOU as well as a Tax Collection
Agreement. If the TCC approves the purchase of the PASBO Tax Collection
Agreement, Mr. Brown would like it authorized at this meeting so the model agreement
could be used in the MOU process to be sure there are no significant areas missed in
the negotiations.

The floor was open for questions and discussion on the MOU. Mr. Wall would like a
date to be set when comments from each board or represented official must be
submitted to ensure a timely redistribution of those comments back to the voting
members of the TCC. Mr. Wall stated at the last meeting Mr. Brown requested input into
the MOU, which each representative had the opportunity to gather from their council and
submit. He questioned whether the TCC is anticipating action at the next meeting to
adopt an agreement. Mr. Brown is not sure what will happen at the next meeting. Mr.
Brown emphasized that purchasing the PASBO Tax Collection Agreement will provide a
template for a document that can be used to put into action the TCC agreement with a
tax collector, which is a separate action item. Mr. Brown emphasized that there must be
a named collector by September 15, 2010. There does not have to be an agreement by
that date. The officers, working with the State College Borough have already discussed
transition planning. Anyone interested in transitioning January 1, 2011 needs to have
time for that transition to occur.

Mr. Kunkle is concerned about the whole process. He does not feel any of the members
would want to read in the CDT that this group is making million dollar purchase without a
formal RFP or without some outline of what is expected and competitive prices for that

Ms. Wyatt knows what the private collectors are going to charge, which is in the same
ballpark as the State College MOU. The private collectors are going to charge on every
dollar that comes through as opposed to what is redistributed to other municipalities that
are not in the TCC. She also mentioned if the cost of establishing a tax claim bureau is
determined you would find that it would be a significant cost. She does not feel this is
being done blindly without regard to cost, but under any scenario it would be a very
expensive endeavor.

Ms. Farkas does not have a problem accepting comments that make everyone more
comfortable. She does not know if in the feed process it is necessary because everyone
knows that the private collectors are going to charge and some of them have legal
issues that don’t need to be dealt with. She feels it is better to accept comments if it
makes people more comfortable and perhaps delay the vote until July if it gets everyone
on board.

Mr. Kunkle feels if an RFP does not go out tonight or if an RFP is not prepared and
begin to solicit comments by June or July the decision will already be made. He is not
opposed to any of the options that have been explored. He is interested in performance
and cost. He is not sure you can say the firms or other alternatives examined cannot
perform this service in a satisfactory manner.

Ms. Farkas respects Mr. Kunkle’s opinion, but feels if an RFP is done tonight it would
take a good month to get drafted.

Mr. Wall feels you can design some very specific requirements in an RFP process that
would help you get to the heart of that matter. He feels it is important to go through a
proper vetting process. He feels it is important to perform due diligence as a group and
ensure that any expenditure of the public’s money is being done properly.

Mr. Long questioned the proposal from the Borough. Mr. Fountaine stated doing an RFP
now creates a problem for State College Borough because they have provided their best
estimate of cost at this point and it is in the public realm now. Opening an RFP would
provide an opportunity for competitors to provide a lower estimate. They provided the
best estimate in terms of cost of collection and agree to bill as a percentage in collection
costs with an annual adjustment based upon audited figures and actual cost at the end of
the year. If the costs are lower than projected, all participants would receive a rebate the
following year. If the costs were higher, an adjustment would be made accordingly the
following year. It is a budget estimate that would come annually for review and approval
with the final billing based on actual cost as an Inter-Municipal Agreement. Mr. Long has
not seen an actual cost from a private sector.

Ms. Wyatt stated the 2% was based on net investment income. She felt people stated
they wanted the collection done locally and that makes a big difference.
Ms. Hile feels at some point the tax collectors should be included because they are the
ones dealing with the companies that are being referenced. She just received a mess
from Centax. She feels going outside the area is a big mistake. She feels keeping it
closer home is better for everyone involved.

Mr. Brown read from the unapproved minutes of the March 24, 2010 meeting: “There
was a motion to authorize the executive committee to enter into discussions with the
State College Borough towards crafting a proposal to become the tax collector for
Centre County. The proposal would be returned to the TCC for consideration as
provided in the bylaws. Furthermore, the proposal should identify two points…” He
stated that is the direction that was taken. This meeting has not gotten into the
discussion of those negotiations. Based on the comments at this meeting, Mr. Brown
would like to know if the group is asking for a different direction or whether the process
should be completed. Mr. Brown would like to know if the MOU is going to be

Mr. Bean stated the body voted not to do an RFP, but rather to move in the direction of
entering into discussions with State College Borough. The MOU is open for discussion
at this meeting and the meeting of June 17, 2010. The group feels there are no other
options. Mr. Brown feels the next step would be for a motion to go through an RFP
process. Mr. Bean stated the motion at the last meeting passed with 96.4% in favor and
3.6% against beginning the negotiating process with State College Borough. The
officers sat down and talked about what the significant points of an agreement would
look like and asked them to provide an offer. The officers did not expect this to be the
final offer, but brought it for discussion and comment. Mr. Brown is waiting for
discussion and comment on the MOU.

Mr. Fountaine stated he had left the room during the discussions at the previous meeting
and was told after the meeting that the TCC had voted to enter into negotiations with the
Borough of State College to have an MOU and ultimately an agreement and the TCC.
He stated the negotiations have been done in good faith for the past month. He stated
the MOU before the group is a result of negotiations with the committee representing the
TCC. His understanding of the action was they were negotiating in good faith with the
TCC to ultimately lead to an agreement.

Mr. MacMath stated he was not in favor of State College Borough doing the tax
collection. He felt an outside third party would be the better way to go, but after seeing
the presentation two months ago and after voting two months ago to enter into that
negotiation to go that direction, he now believes at 2.5%, 2.55%, or 2.65% if the
Bellefonte Office and the circuit rider are added into that mix, it is far less than he is
paying right now to collect taxes by a wide margin.

Mr. Kunkle stated it is almost double what he is paying. He is interested in costcontaining;
services; the ability to get out of the agreement if that is desired; not having
capital costs added into the operating costs. He wants to drive the cost down and get
the best service. The MOU will be expensive for Ferguson Township. He cannot
believe it’s not going to be as expensive as what school district’s pay. His collection cost
for the township and the school district is 1.14%.

Ms. Farkas suggested discussing the MOU further at the next meeting. She feels
people left the last meeting with different ideas. She suggested each person take it back
to their board or council for discussion.

Mr. Brown would like all comments returned to him via email by June 10th. He will then
return the comments via email by June 12th. Mr. Brown requested that each municipality
or school district provide only one email. Send the comments to Mr. Brown at

Mr. Brown feels the group is not close to LST discussions at this point. Mr. Brown has
not seen any information to support the statement that says the TCC can force a
municipality or school district to have the county collector collect the LST. Mr. Brown will
ask the solicitor to verify this.

Mr. Leary questioned why the TCC wasn’t considering the DCED model agreement
since it is free. Mr. Brown stated that agreement is not as inclusive as the PASBO Tax
Collection Agreement. Mr. Brown has not seen the PASBO Agreement. Mr. Leary
suggested the DECD Model Agreement be obtained.

Ms. Wyatt feels the money spent for the PASBO Tax Collection Agreement would be
money well spent.

Mr. Wall questioned whether there was any discussion with other TCC’s that have
reviewed the PASBO Agreement. Mr. Brown has talked with several different
representatives and they have been very pleased. It does need to be modified for each
County. Their solicitors have all agreed that it will save them legal fees in the long run.
The PASBO Agreement could possibly be obtained under the Open Records request.
Mr. Wall suggested it would probably be a copyrighted item. You could look at it, but
you could not use it.

Mr. Wall made a motion to pursue obtaining a copy of the PASBO Tax Collection
Agreement for review and obtain a copy of the DCED Model Agreement for review; then
provide the documents to the solicitor for his review. He then can provide his
assessment to the TCC at the next meeting. Mr. Kunkle seconded the motion. A voice
vote was unanimous to approve the motion.

The officers recommended the creation of a Transition Sub-Committee. The purpose
of this sub-committee would be to work through the various steps of moving to a single
tax collector for the County. Participation from several political sub-divisions would
provide a representation to aid this process.

The chair invites volunteers or nominations to serve on the committee to help with the
transition. Nominations for the Transition Committee include: Randy Brown, Ken
Bean, Mark Kunkle, Kim Wyatt; Brenda Hile; Donna Miller; Amy Farkas; John
Gribble. Mr. MacMath made a motion to accept the Transition Committee members.
Ms. Norma Crater seconded the motion. The motion was passed with a voice vote.

VIII. Public Comment
There was no public comment.

IX. Discussion
Mr. Brumbaugh asked how amendments can be made to the by-laws. Mr. Marshall stated an
amendment must be provided to the committee members in writing or email ten days prior to
proposed action.

X. Future Meeting Dates
The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, June 17, 2010. The officers will select additional
meeting dates and distribute them at a later time.

XI. Future Agenda Planning

-Reviewing comments from the Memorandum of Understanding, which are due June 10, 2010.
Those responses will be redistributed June 12, 2010 via email. If email is not acceptable to an
individual they must contact Mr. Brown and a hard copy will be sent.
-Selection of Auditor for the TCC.
-Time Line for Tax Collector selection.
-A meeting date will be established for the Transition Committee. The meeting will be publicly
advertised, but members will also be notified individually.

XII. Adjournment
Mr. Brumbaugh made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:20 PM. Mr. Wall seconded the
motion. A voice vote was unanimous to adjourn the Tax Collection Committee Meeting of
Wednesday, May 12, 2010.