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East Deer approves 11.5% increase in property taxes

| Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

East Deer commissioners on Tuesday approved an 11.5 percent increase in the township's real estate tax rate for 2014.

The revenue will help fund the township's $938,000 budget, which commissioners also approved at a noon meeting to close the books on 2013.

The real estate tax rate was increased by slightly more than half a mill, from 4.5 mills to 5.0175 mills. For the owner of a typical township property, that's an annual increase of about $27.

The township is expecting to take in about $24,000 more than it plans to spend, Commissioner Tony Taliani said. It is ending 2013 with about $108,000 in its general fund.

Taxes were increased to recover money the township lost because of successful assessment appeals.

“There would be no increase if not for all the reassessment appeals,” Taliani said.

Commissioners added $29,000 to the final spending plan specifically for anticipated tax refunds, Taliani said.

The township added $10,000 to next year's budget to pay for a residential demolition project that was started at 225 Freeport Road but was not finished this year.

The budget also includes a number of pay increases:

• Police Chief John Manchini's pay was increased by almost 3 percent, from $41,400 to $42,600.

• Township Secretary Tina Lesoon's pay was increased by almost 4 percent, from $40,828 to $42,400.

• The part-time office assistant's pay was increased by 25 cents an hour to $10 per hour, for a total of $5,700.

• Pay for part-time police officers was increased by 50 cents an hour, to $11.50 per hour, for a total annual cost of $88,412, up by $4,000.

Another increase of 50 cents per hour will take effect on Jan. 1, 2015.

Meeting change

Commissioners will combine their regular meeting of Jan. 8 with the required annual reorganization meeting on Monday.

The regular meeting will follow the reorganization meeting beginning at 7 p.m. on Monday at the township building, 927 Freeport Road.

There will be no commissioners meeting on Jan. 8.

Brian C. Rittmeyer is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-226-4701 or brittmeyer@tribweb.com.

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