UPPER MAKEFIELD >> The Board of Supervisors on Nov. 6 adopted a $10.9 million budget that will hold the line on taxes in 2020.
The budget estimates $14.6 million in revenues and $10.9 million in proposed expenditures, leaving a fund balance of $3.7 million. Township officials estimate the 2019 General Fund expenditures to come in at $304,000 less than projected.
The average residential property assessment in Upper Makefield is $65,748, which equates to an average township real estate tax bill of $500.
Since 2011, Upper Makefield's real estate tax has been steadily reduced from a high of 13.3525 mils to the current level of 7.6025 mils. (A mil is $1 per $1,000 in property assessment.) The township's portion of the total real estate tax bill is 4.80 percent.
Additional revenues come from the township's 1/2 of a one percent Earned Income Tax, which is shared with the Council Rock School District. Upper Makefield's share is set to rise $100,000 to $4.2 million in 2020. This translates into an Earned Income Tax payment per household of about $796.
The budget is developed by township staff and was reviewed during publicly advertised Board of Supervisor workshop meetings on Oct. 1 and 7. The supervisors subsequently reviewed a preliminary budget presentation by the township manager before voting on October 15 to seek public comment. These meetings included line-item scrutiny, discussion of capital improvement planning, the township debt repayment schedule and Sewer and Water Reserve funds.
Between this year's October 15 public presentation and adoption of the 2020 budget on November 6, no public comments were received.
The township budget for 2020 includes plans to:
- Improve Mt. Eyre Road, Valley View Drive and Old Barn Court.
- Purchase playground equipment for Brownsburg Park.
- Add cantilever shades to the Lookout Park picnic area.
- Contribute $156,000 to the Upper Makefield Fire Company.
- Contribute $19,000 to the Lingohocken Fire Company.
- Hire one additional police officer.
- Hire an additional public works employee.
- Maintain 24-hour emergency ambulance service.
- Continue the volunteer firefighter incentive program.
- Fully fund the township pension plans.
- Fully fund the 5-year Capital Improvement Plan.
- Day-to-day operations in all township departments.