Lim­er­ick to soon be debt free

Su­per­vi­sor says no tax hike for 30 years

The Phoenix - - FRONT PAGE - By Evan Brandt ebrandt@21st-cen­tu­ry­ @PottstownNews on Twit­ter

LIM­ER­ICK » The town­ship will soon have the dis­tinc­tion of be­ing debt-free.

It’s all thanks to the $75.1 mil­lion sale last month of the town­ship’s sewer sys­tem to Aqua PA.

That money not only re­tired all the sewer sys­tem’s debt, with a tech­ni­cal ex­cep­tion, but will also pay off the $3.5 mil­lion left on the debt for the new public works fa­cil­ity and the $5.2 mil­lion the town­ship bor­rowed to com­plete the $10.5 mil­lion town­ship build­ing.

Both were bank loans and can be paid off any time, said As­sis­tant Town­ship Man­ager Beth DiPrete, who told the su­per­vi­sors Tues­day night the move would save $1 mil­lion in in­ter­est pay­ments.

What will re­main is $3 mil­lion from a 2015 town­ship bond that can­not be paid off un­til 2020, she said. Some of that money was old sewer debt and the rest was used to pur­chase the Lin­field Sports Park.

DiPrete sug­gested, and the su­per­vi­sors agreed, that an es­crow ac­count be set up to make pay­ments on that debt un­til

2020 when it can be paid off in full.

When that hap­pens, Lim­er­ick’s AAA bond rat­ing will dis­ap­pear be­cause, like a per­son with no credit cards has no credit rat­ing, a town­ship with no debt will have no bond rat­ing.

The su­per­vi­sors were un­fazed by that prospect.

With all debts paid, the town­ship will still have about $55 mil­lion on hand, which it in­tends to in­vest in the hopes of us­ing the pro­ceeds of that in­vest­ment to pay for cap­i­tal projects and in­creased costs that come down the pike.

“I don’t see us tak­ing on debt or rais­ing taxes for an­other 30 years,” said Su­per­vi­sor Ken Sper­ring, “so long as fu­ture su­per­vi­sors are as fis­cally re­spon­si­ble as we have been.”

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