Eldred tabled actions for 2016, keeps taxes level
In what was Chairwoman Gretchen Gannon Pettit's final Eldred Township supervisors' meeting, a number of issues were tabled to be tackled by the incoming board. In January Joanna Bush will join Sharon Solt and Mary Anne Clausen in leading the township.
Items that were put off until January include the hiring of a new tax collector and the appointment of a new solicitor. Mike Kaspszyk has requested not to be reappointed in the new year, but has agreed to stay on in the interim until he is replaced.
Also on the agenda was the 2016 township operating budget. Copies of the 2015 and proposed 2016 budget are available on the township website. The board will meet at 9:30 a.m. Dec. 28 to vote on the budget.
When asked about increases in the new budget, Clausen said, "There is no increase in millage; it remains at 9.5 mills.
"We anticipate an increase in revenue and have adjusted some line items for that. We anticipate higher litigation costs, and we increased there as well. The main difference is that we have begun putting money aside for capital expenditures, so this year we will be putting aside $80,000 in that account. But in the future it will be $40,000 per year. We are looking at purchasing a new truck and hopefully a bucket truck as well. This account will be used for those types of expenditures."
The community center reported a few new leases for November. The main lease ratified by the board was for the West End Food Pantry. Linda Kile reported that the pantry served 37 families the first Saturday that it was open and the families seemed genuinely happy with the food they were able to take home. Kile reported that the pantry will be open again this coming Saturday.
Water extraction was the main topic during audience participation. One issue that was raised was the resident's desire to have a public meeting with the Department of Environmental Protection and the Delaware River Basin Commission regarding the Nestle Waters project.
"With the approval of the board I would be happy to approach them about a meeting," said Clausen. "Last time I spoke with them they said that unless it was a public hearing they would not have someone available to come out in the evening, and it wouldn't make sense for them to come during the day when so many of you couldn't be here. But I will try again."
Clausen said that since Nestle has yet to provide the township hydrogeologist, Phil Getty, with the results of the drawdown tests, it seemed premature to set up the meeting.
Apparently Getty has expressed to a number of residents that he expects the results sometime in January.