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Taxes going down

Published December 10. 2013 05:00PM

For the first time in years a tax decrease is anticipated in Summit Hill.

The borough council gave tentative approval to its 2014 budget Monday night which calls for a one-fourth mill reduction in millage.

Presently, the tax rate is 16.1 mills. The new budget has millage set at 15.85 mills.

Final adoption of the budget is set for 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 23.

The budget is based on 13.85 mills for general purposes, 1.5 mills for street lighting, and a half-mill for fire allocation.

The fiscal package is balanced at $1,410,305.

The 2013 budget had included 14.1 mills for the general budget, 1.5 mills for street lighting, and a half-mill for fire purposes.

Councilman Jesse Walck, a banker, said one reason the taxes could be reduced is because the borough was making advance payments on the principal of its construction loan.

He said the reduction comes to an average of $27.39 per taxable property in the borough.

Walck said the loan, which has a balance of about $59,000, is expected to be paid off by June more than a year sooner than scheduled.

He also pointed out that the new budget includes a capital improvement provision, with $2,000 allocated for borough buildings and $2,000 for borough equipment.

Most of the borough's income is from real estate taxes, which totals $697,740.

In addition, the borough receives $275,070 from the local tax enabling act (per capita taxes, occupation taxes, real estate transfer taxes, and earned income tax), $50,000 from the cable TV franchise tax, $2,250 from nonbusiness licenses and permits, $22,750 from fines, $24,035 from interest and rents, and $319,100 from sanitation fees.

The expenses include $317,430 for public safety, $281,500 for sanitation including the garbage contract, $220,300 for general government, $103,780 for public works, $204,835 for debt principal and interest, and $275,550 in miscellaneous expenditures including $105,300 for employee health insurance.

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