Bucks County Herald

Springfield does not project tax hike

BARRIE-JOHN MURPHY

Springfield Township residents will see no increase in taxes.

If the budget is approved next week, residents will continue to pay 12 mills in taxes, so the owner of a home valued at $310,395 would pay $406 in township taxes.

Currently, expenses exceed revenues by $41,000, but township Manager Mike Brown said the township could either draw on its reserve savings to make up the difference or opt not to fund some projects in the current budget.

He projects a net income gain of approximately $181,000 by the end of the year, putting total cash reserves at well over at $800,000. “That’s a pretty big saving,” he told the board at its November meeting.

But Brown’s enthusiasm was met with some skepticism from board member John Oehler. “I don’t like to spend just because it’s there,” he said. “There are some big numbers out in the future,” he cautioned.

Those big ticket items include a $47,000 police vehicle still to be paid for and an estimated $315,000 in vehicle replacements for the Roads Department.

Incoming board member Jim Nilsen warned of unexpected expenses. “One nasty storm and it all looks a little different.”

In other news, police Chief Michael McDonald briefed the meeting on problem speeding spots, revealing the roads that accumulated the most speeding complaints between 2012 and 2017 were the following: 1.Povenski Road, 2. Route 212 through Springtown, 3. Richlandtown Pike, 4. Peppermint Road, 5. Old Bethlehem Pike.

He asked the board to consider the following issue: Does the township have a speeding problem, or is it more of a speed limit problem? The data showed a 39 percent violation rate on Peppermint Road, but that road also has a speed limit of 25 mph that is easily exceeded on its numerous hillocks.

Among the items in the police department’s 2018 budget wishm list is a more sophisticated and more unobtrusive speed tracking device, which would provide more accurate driver data than the current highly visible device. Supervisors will determine the fate of this and additional items at their Dec. 12 budget meeting.

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