In an almost anti-climatic moment, the Colonial Beach Town Council passed the 2015 fiscal year budget in less than ten minutes several hours before the state mandated deadline. The 4-2 vote in favor of the budget followed months of disagreement over funding.
Council members Linda Brubaker and Wanda Goforth both voted no on the budget. Jim Chiarello was absent from the special meeting. Mayor Mike Ham, Vice-Mayor Tommy Edwards, council members Pete Bone and Gary Seeber all voted yes on Resolution #43-14.
Over the past few months, the council had discussed the majority of the budget with the major sticking point being Colonial Beach Public Schools’ request for $2.5 million in funding. The $2.5 million was an increase of a bit more than $400,000 than fiscal year 2014.
The argument over the independent school system has gone on since at least the 1970s with one faction of townspeople favoring consolidation with Westmoreland County Public Schools. Multiple town citizens spoke out at town council meetings for and against the school system over the past several months.