Land­fill fund staves off tax hike

The Community Connection - - FRONT PAGE - By Evan Brandt [email protected]­tu­ry­media.com @PottstownNews on Twit­ter

WEST POTTS­GROVE >> Town­ship com­mis­sion­ers unan­i­mously adopted a $3 mil­lion 2019 bud­get Wed­nes­day night at the last meet­ing of the year.

The bud­get — ac­tual spend­ing is $3,067,434 — re­quires no tax hike. The tax rate will re­main at 2.5 mills.

More than 43 per­cent of the bud­get is cov­ered by draw­ing out of the re­serve ac­count the town­ship has from years of col­lect­ing tip­ping fees at the Pottstown Land­fill, which closed in 2007.

Town­ship Man­ager Craig

Lloyd said the bud­get uses $1,322,473 of re­serve funds to be bal­anced and keep taxes steady.

He said the 2018 bud­get used $1.5 mil­lion of the re­serve fund, which once had as much as $40

mil­lion, and still has about $15 mil­lion left, the same amount it has held at least since at least 2013.

That was also the last year the town­ship raised taxes.

Some projects bud­geted for 2018 were pushed off to 2019, which is why less was needed from the re­serve fund, Lloyd ex­plained.

The pri­mary project in that cat­e­gory is the re­place­ment of the town­ship’s street lights with LED lights, a project that will cost West Potts­grove about $45,000. How­ever, the change will save the town­ship abut $15,000 a year, mean­ing it will break even in only three years, and en­joy the sav­ings in the fol­low­ing years, he said.

Other bud­get re­lated plans for 2019 in­clude storm sewer work on School Lane, for which the town­ship has a grant, and san­i­tary sewer work on Syl­van Drive, which will be un­der­taken by the town­ship’s sewer au­thor­ity and for which a Com­mu­nity De­vel­op­ment Block Grant will help to pay.

Other fac­tors af­fect­ing the bud­get are a 3 per­cent con­tracted salary in­crease for the town­ship’s po­lice of­fi­cers. 2019 will be the third year of a three­year con­tract and ne­go­ti­a­tions on a new con­tract will be­gin around March, Lloyd said.

This ar­ti­cle first ap­peared as a post in The Dig­i­tal Note­book blog.

EVAN BRANDT — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

West Potts­grove com­mis­sion­ers, from left, Thomas Pal­ladino, Charles Valen­tine, Town­ship Man­ager Craig Lloyd, Sec­re­tary Joanne Herb, Chair­man Steve Miller, Solic­i­tor Charles Bres­nan, and com­mis­sion­ers Matt Green and Pete LaRosa dur­ing Wed­nes­day night’s meet­ing.

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