(12/16) The Carroll Valley Borough Council has voted to adopt the 2016 budget with no real estate property tax increase. Borough Manager Dave Hazlett distributed letters that outlined the high points of the 2016 budget. Real estate property taxes will remain at a rate of 2.5 mills (or .00245 of assessed land and buildings). A revenue projection will be at $2, 210,600 – an
increase of 5.64 percent.
"There weren't really any challenges in balancing this budget," Hazlett said afterwards. "There's not a whole lot that's changed from one year to the next. We actually are seeing increases in earned income tax revenue and that made budgeting a lot easier for us this year. There's been an increase every year for the last two or three years, in fact, and we continue to see
increases from it. I can't really speak to why, but it just keeps increasing. I credit York Adams Tax Bureau for doing a good job and being diligent and getting people to pay."
Hazlett further explained that the budget confirms that, despite concerns to the contrary, taxes will not be increasing due to the new municipal building project - a subject of controversy over the last year. "We have said again and again that taxes will not be raised to pay for this building, and this budget reflects that very clearly," he said.
The borough will fund all necessary services in the community, including continuing to pay for four full-time police officers, road maintenance, and parks and recreation services in 2016. Other services covered would be the July 4 celebration, National Night Out and Farmer’s Market.
When asked about the proposed building project, Hazlett briefly updated the council: "We're meeting to go through some potential changes in the project to bring the project in line with where we want it to be financially," he said, adding that, with regard to grant money the council had applied for, "we're still sitting around twiddling our thumbs waiting for the governor
and the rest of the legislation to quit fighting and acting like first graders and actually sit down and hammer something out" with regard to the budget impasse.
Retiring council member Neal Abrams offered some words on both the budget impasse and the municipal building, saying "The budget is a big deal, and the new building is a big deal," he said. "Ten years ago I walked in here and there was water all over the floor. Two weeks ago I walked in and found the manager walking around with trash cans and buckets and water was dripping
out of the ceiling everywhere. I'm not saying we have to have a huge building or a Taj Mahal, as some people are calling it, but this place is uninhabitable and I urge everybody on the council and the community to go ahead with this thing." For more information on the 2016 Carroll Valley budget, go to www.carrollvalley.org
Read other articles about Fairfield