MANCHESTER – For the second year in a row, Manchester residents will likely see a slight decrease in their municipal tax bills.
Manchester Township CFO Diane Lapp told The Manchester Times the average homeowner will see a $6 decrease in those taxes, from $1,031 to $1,025. “I am very, very happy with the way things are going,” she said. She credited Mayor Kenneth Palmer with finding conservative, responsible ways for funding much-needed items and services while also looking for cuts that don’t compromise those things for residents and staff.
The budget presentation will be held at 6 p.m. on April 24 at the municipal building, 1 Colonial Drive. A public hearing and final budget adoption is slated for May 8 at 6 p.m.
The projected 2017 budget is $33,906,697.45, an increase of $603,338.87 over 2016’s $33,303,358.58 budget. However, the tax levy will see a decrease of $76,381.70 from 2016’s $21,246,283.15 to this year’s proposed $21,169,901.45.
“This year’s budget is a flat budget. If it’s approved, we’ll have the lowest municipal rates since 2013, so we’re very proud of that,” Palmer said.
The levy has decreased despite the police department adding two officers. The township has also implemented its paving plan and capital improvement plan.
“And even with all that, we’re still finding ways to do more with the same amount of money,” Palmer said.
The mayor added that there are no cuts, but a number of savings in this budget.
Manchester found savings through the state health plan, now seeing all union members contributing to their benefits. Revenues have increased as well because “Manchester is getting a little busier,” the mayor said.
“We have a lot of building going on, so our inspections have gone up. The foreclosure registry program has been successful,” Palmer said. At press time, 36 homes had been de-registered. “Things are working. Revenues are good. The town is doing very well.”
The consolidation of the Department of Public Works and Utilities department, as well as bringing in an in-house HVAC and electrical work has produced savings, he added.
Full details of the 2017 budget will be presented on April 24.