In the first unanimous vote of a tumultuous four-year term, the Montgomery County commissioners approved a 2012 budget that will increase county property taxes by 17 percent. The tax increase is the first in ten years. The average homeowner with a property assessed at $168,000 will pay an additional $77 in taxes for a total bill of $530. A proposed budget unveiled last month would have cut spending by $14.6 million and called for the elimination of the planning commission and parks departments drawing outrage from county residents.
County bond rating upgraded in error
Moody’s Investment Services recently announced that it erred when it released information that upgraded Montgomery County’s Aaa bond rating from “with negative outlook” to “stable.” Moody’s had downgraded the Aaa bond rating of many state and local government agencies in August while it reviewed the impact the federal government’s financial situation may have on these governments. Moody’s released a list last week that upgraded many of the state and local governments under review but the list erroneously reported that Montgomery County’s rating was “stable.” The county had a “negative outlook” prior to August because county commissioners have continued to dip into cash reserves to balance the budget. Therefore, Moody’s has continued the “negative outlook” for the county bond rating.
Source: The Intelligencer; 12/14/2011
Horsham budget passed
Horsham council unanimously adopted a 2012 budget that will not increase taxes for property owners in the township. The property tax rate will remain at one mill, with a mill being a tax of $1 for each $1,000 in assessed property value. A home assessed at the township average of $178,128 will pay $178.13 in township property taxes. Of the one mill township real estate tax, 0.47 goes to support the library, 0.31 mills to the fire company, and 0.22 for parks and recreation.
Abington adopts 5.37 percent tax increase
The Abington Township Board of Commissioners adopted the township’s 2012 budget with a 5.37 percent tax increase. The average home assessed at $150,000 can expect a tax bill of $588, a $30 increase over last year. The additional revenue from the tax increase will be used on a $2.7 million bond issue for drainage projects throughout the township. The 2012 budget is $780,000 less than the 2011 budget, with employees agreeing to a pay freeze to aid in the reduction of overall spending.
Source: Glenside News; 12/20/2011
Upper Dublin hikes taxes
In a 6-1 vote, the Upper Dublin Board of Commissioners adopted the 2012 budget, which includes a 5.91 percent tax increase. The township’s tax rate will rise to 5.231 mills and a home assessed at the average $195,000 can expect a township property tax bill of $1,020.05, about $56 higher than 2011.
No tax increase in Lower Salford
Lower Salford supervisors unanimously approved a 2012 budget that includes no tax increase for the first time in three years. The township property tax rate will remain at 2.524 mills with one mill equal to a tax of $1 for each $1,000 in assessed property value. The board implemented many cost-cutting measures over three years including wage freezes, layoffs and health insurance restructuring. In other news, the Lower Salford Board of Supervisors is looking for letters of interest from residents interested in serving on the Planning Commission, Park Board or Recreation Authority. Find out more at www.lowersalfordtownship.org.
Source: Souderton Independent; 12/16/2011
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