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7 years and counting

Published November 17. 2011 05:01PM

The big news for Chestnuthill Township residents is there will be no tax increase for 2012.

According to township chairman, Chuck Gould, it is the seventh year in a row that there has not been a tax increase.

"We continue to watch our expenditures," he said.

The 2012 Budget and Fiscal Plan is for $3,989,650. The 2011 budget was $3,909,871.

The millage rate will remain at 4 mills. For every $25,000 of assessment ( of the assessed value) $100 will be paid by Chestnuthill Twp. residents in real estate taxes.

The major break down of the projected expenses is: $611,425-General; $700,803-Public Safety; $1,604,623-Highway and Streets; $221,000-Community Development; $177,355-Culture and Recreation; $674,444-Debt Payments, Insurance and Taxes.

The major break down of the projected revenues is: $1,200,000-Earned Income Tax; $853,042-Real Estate Tax; $220,000-Licenses and Permits; $32,000-Fines and Forfeits; $1,000-Interest Earnings; $194,549-State Capital and Operating grants; $598,266-State Shared Revenue and Entitlement; $46,500-General Government; $71,120-Public Safety; $80,000-Recycling; $14,000-Culture/Recreation; $552,369-From Savings; $126,804-Other Sources.

Dave Albright, the township manager, said the major points of the budget is 40 percent of the budget is for projected road maintenance expenditures and 18 percent spent for public safety.

The budget includes costs to implement the 911 readdressing project which will include public education, updated street name signage and mapping.

The township office has been operating with a staff that has been decreased by 20 percent since 2009.

Chestnuthill Twp. continues to expand recycling opportunities to its residents, in cooperation with Burnley Workshop and the PA DEP. The Transfer Station/Recycling Center improvements include the purchase of a generator and a baler for shredded paper. Both of these items are designed to increase efficiencies to ensure a seamless operation.

Resident Stuart Thody congratulated the township officers on keeping the budget with no increase in taxes but thinks difficult times are still ahead.

Thody asked if there was a line item in the budget for the Merwinsburg Hotel project.

Albright said there was but it is just for continued maintenance.

Chairman Gould added that it didn't mean that the township wouldn't be getting more grant money for the project.

Supervisor Chris Eckert said that in the last couple of months before election, misinformation about the township's budget was reported.

"Please ask. Contact us and we'll discuss it. We don't want any misinformation out there. We just want the truth out there," he said.

He added that to have no increase in taxes for the last seven years is something to be proud of.

The complete proposed budget is available to the public at the township office or you can see it on the township's website, under Township News.

If you have any questions, call Dave Albright, Township Manager at 570-992-7247.

The budget will be voted on at the Tuesday, Dec. 2, 7 p.m. meeting.

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