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Council Introduces 2019 Budget

At the conclusion of the Saturday, March 16th Budget Work Session, Borough Council Introduced the 2019 Municipal and Sewer Utility Budgets.

A Public Hearing and Final Adoption of the 2019 Budget is scheduled for the Regular Borough Council Meeting on Monday, April 15th.

Following is a summary…

Municipal Budget

The 2019 Budget increases the Local (Municipal) Tax Rate to $1.243 per $100 of assessed valuation, up 1.846¢ over last year.

For a home assessed at the 2019 Borough average of $147,580 the increase amounts to $27 per year ($6.75 per quarter / $2.25 per month) over a home assessed at the 2018 average of $147,600 — a 1.49% increase; well within state-mandated caps.

This year’s total Local Municipal Tax to be paid by the owner of a home assessed at the Borough’s average  is $1,834.60. By way of comparison, that’s a 5.3% increase over taxes paid by property owners in 2015, or just $93 over four years for the average home.

While the total 2019 Budget is $8,752,720 (not including grants), after anticipating various sources of revenue including state aid and surplus the total amount to be raised through taxation for Borough operations stands at $5,934,463 ($93,870 over 2018).

The Borough utilized $939,800 in Fund Balance (surplus) this year to reduce the Local Purpose Tax, plus an additional $375,000 was utilized to pay down debt sooner than required and another $50,000 was anticipated for future capital improvement projects, while still maintaining $1,770,755 in Fund Balance for use in future years. Maintaining a healthy surplus, combined with responsible, strategic use of these “rainy day funds”, contributes to the Borough’s strong financial position, high credit rating, and long-term tax stability.

This Budget maintains or expands all existing services and includes a 2% increase for staff.

For specific details see the 2019 Budget by selecting the link below;

Palmyra 2019 Introduced Budget (3-16-19)

The 2019 User Friendly Budget and other important information will be posted on our Finance webpage after Adoption.

Sewer Utility Budget

The 2019 Sewer Utility Budget stands at $1,815,337, with spending on waste water treatment and operations, debt service, and salaries down a total of $60,389 from last year. This Budget in fact has now been reduced two years in a row and is the lowest since 2015 when it was $1,799,226.

A driving factor in the Sewer Utility Budget remains the debt service associated with the previously completed $3.4 million Sludge Thickening and Odor Control Improvement Project at the Sewer Plant, and the ongoing $910,000 Public Road Pump Station Elimination Project that includes repaving New Jersey Avenue.

These improvements included major equipment upgrades, elimination or replacement of outdated facilities, and installation of the latest sewage treatment technology. In addition, the life of the Sewer plant has been extended an additional 50 years. Additional improvements are planned this year.

The amount of Sewer surplus utilized was $197,637 leaving $449,299 available for use in future Sewer budgets.

The Sewer Utility Budget maintains or expands all existing services and includes 2% increases for the three full-time Sewer Utility employees.