The market value of properties in Schuylkill County increased by more than $37 million for 2013 taxes it was reported by Chief County Assessor Virginia "Ginny" Murray at the work session of the Schuylkill County commissioners held Thursday at the courthouse in Pottsville.

The market value of all properties for the tax year 2013 is $5,053,925,141 and the assessed valuation on which taxes are levies at 50 percent of the market value is $2,526,963,670.

This includes assessed value for active mineral at $7,067,950 and assessed value of county held minerals at $728,640. The Homestead Medium value is $26,570 from funds received from casinos which help pay for school taxes. The number of people eligible to pay the $5 per capita tax in 2013 is 96,287. The majority of property value increases were brought about by school districts in the county in appeals to the assessment appeals board to bring the properties up to standard of new market evaluations.

Other business

The commissioners do not plan to appeal a decision made by the county court which approved Schuylkill Haven Borough's appeal to have a certain parcel of land removed from the tax role.

Recently Judge Cyrus Palmer Dolbin ruled in favor of the borough in its appeal from the ruling of the county's assessment appeal board which denied the borough from taking the property of the tax list. The borough wants to use the property with its sewage treatment plant which adjoins the property in question. The court overturned the assessment appeal board's ruling. The property is 0.99 of an acre fronting on Liberty Street.

At the request of County Engineer Lisa Mahall the board approved a contract with WJP Engineers to provide engineering services on behalf of the county's planning commission to review and improve inspections of Eagle Rock Company's subdivision plans of Hidden Forest Phase 2 and 3 in its subdivisions located in East Union and North Union townships.

At the request of Mark Scarbinsky, county administrator, the commissioners adopted a new county credit card policy which provides for stricter internal controls for county operations. Scarbinsky said the policy establishes and communicates rules and regulations associated with the use of a county issued credit card and that the M&T Bank in Pottsville has been named to provide the credit card service.

The commissioners approved the sale of surplus vehicles owned by the Schuylkill Transportation System (STS) awarded to successful bidders. The sale realized $30,680.44 and the proceeds obtained from the sale will be retained by the STS and utilized for public transportation programs.

Charles Felty, Walker Township, was awarded a1995 tow trailer and 2002 Freightline school bus for $4,000; Naftzainger Auto Wrecking Company, Auburn, six diesel buses for $1,998; Anthracite Professional Services, two school buses for $660.85; H.D. Motor Company Inc., Pottsville, two buses and one trolley bus for $7,500; Borough of Minersville, pickup truck for $3,501.59; and Grace Quality Used Cars, eight buses for $13,020.

Commissioner Frank Staudenmeier announced the courthouse will be closed Monday, Nov. 12, in observance of Veterans Day.