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Tax rate cut planned in West Deer

| Friday, Nov. 23, 2012, 12:02 a.m.

West Deer residents' real estate tax millage will drop — but their taxes will stay the same.

Supervisors on Wednesday night discussed a preliminary budget in which a the tax rate drops from 2.35 mills to 2.03 mills.

But when this year's reassessment in Allegheny County is considered, the amount the average real estate owner is taxed next year will be similar to this year's total.

Township officials had to consider the new reassessments that increased overall property values about 32 percent, according to Daniel Mator, township manager.

County officials won't have a final average reassessment total per municipality until March because hearings are still being conducted for property owners appealing their new assessments.

A $30 annual fee will be reactivated for next year for property owners who have streetlights in front of their homes or adjacent homes who benefit from street lights.

The fee had been suspended for the last two years until the street light fund neared depletion.

West Deer's budget for next year will be $4.65 million. That's about the same as this year.

The township plans to shift money between accounts to give it $400,000 more and allow a more ambitious road paving, road maintenance and guardrail-installation program.

The public works budget will be the largest expenditure at $1.6 million; the police budget will be $1.4 million.

Supervisors tentatively plan to pass the final budget Dec. 5. The preliminary budget is on display at the township office.

When the final reassessment figures are determined in March, it's possible that some municipalities might reopen their budgets.

George Guido is a freelance writer forTrib Total Media.

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