One-mill tax increase on the table for S. Abington Twp.

First Posted: 12/2/2014

SOUTH ABINGTON TWP. — Supervisors are considering a one-mill tax increase next year, equating to about $25 per year for the average household, according to Township Manager David O’Neill, who presented a preliminary 2015 budget at the board’s regular meeting Monday, Nov. 24.

He said the last increase was also by 1 mill in 2010.

“Now in 2014,” he said, “we have, unfortunately, a very good reason that I am requesting another 1-mill increase to raise our tax rate for general purposes up to…12 and 3/4 mills, for general purposes. …We have had significant increase in our pension over the past several years, we’ve had significant increases in health care costs and just keeping up with the times and the increases of everything over four years, we should raise our millage by 1 mill.”

A mill is a $1 tax on every $1,000 of assessed property value. According to O’Neill, one mill brings in approximately $86,000 total in South Abington Township. Divided among the 3,900 tax bills, the average bill will see an increase of about $25.

“In keeping up with everything we need to keep up with,” O’Neill said, “I think it’s the right thing to do.”

An increase of $10 per EDU (equivalent dwelling unit) per quarter is also on the table for the sewer bills, due to an increase in sewer costs.

In other business, the supervisors discussed an agreement with the Pennsylvania American Water Company regarding the paving of township roads. The company is installing water line for the Ivy Industrial Park in three areas of the township: the first 650 feet of Reynolds Road, off of Carbondale Road; a section of Willow Lane and a portion of Sean Drive, off of Willow Lane.

“We’ve held off doing any paving out there,” O’Neill said, “because we were afraid once we did, they were going to come in with the water line. So, I was able to negotiate with them that they will reimburse us, whatever their contracted rate is — they’re going to put it out for bid — and whatever their bid numbers are for a top coat of paving for the full width of the road, the milling of the roads and the trench restoration.”

The water company will complete a temporary repair job in the areas affected by the water line installations, then the township will complete the paving with the funds paid by the company.

O’Neill said the project is going to bid within a month and the company expects to start in late winter and be complete within a year. He said he did not put the funds in the 2015 budget as income, however, because there is no way to be sure when the project will be complete.

“Whatever is up in that area that is not being interfered with by the water company,” he said, “we’ll be taking a look at for the paving projects for next year. …That area is a very bad area for paving right now, so we’ll look at that area for the spring.”

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