Bensalem scales back casino rebate
Since the opening of the Parx Casino in 2006, Bensalem homeowners have received annual $300 rebate checks from the $11 million in taxes the township receives from slots and table games. But in the midst of a budget shortfall, the spending plan introduced by Bensalem Mayor Joseph DiGirolamo includes a 65 percent reduction in the casino rebate check. The amount of the rebate checks will fall to $100 for each homeowner – a total cost of $1.6 million. Bensalem Township is struggling to reduce another multi-million dollar budget deficit for 2012 and will use $5.3 million from township savings to balance the budget, leaving $54 million in the rainy day fund. The township police department budget has increased $7 million in five years and makes up 67 percent of the general fund budget. Township residents can expect a property tax bill of $402 for the average home assessed at $22,000. The plan was approved by Bensalem Council on Dec. 5.
Warminster passes budget
The Warminster Board of Supervisors passed the final budget for 2012 with no increase in taxes. The final budget was $1.2 million less than the preliminary budget approved in November, with the reduction due in part to lower healthcare costs, a general fund surplus for 2011 and reduced waste hauling fees. The budget was passed 3-2 with discussion about revisiting the spending plan when Supervisor-elect Mark McKee takes over in January.
Source: Public Spirit; 12/6/2011
Legal guide for seniors unveiled
The Bucks County Bar Association and the Bucks County Area Agency on Aging have published The Bucks County Elder Law Handbook and Resource Guide. The 75-page booklet contains information on everything from financial planning, veterans’ benefits, and heating bill assistance to property tax and rent rebates. Fifteen percent of Bucks County’s population is over 65. Copies of the booklet will be available at senior centers throughout the county or by visiting www.buckscounty.org.
Source: Courier Times; 12/2/2011
Tentative Northampton budget proposes no tax increase
Northampton supervisors approved a proposed 2012 budget that will hold the line on municipal property taxes. A home assessed at the median value of $35,600 can expect to pay $397 in municipal property taxes. The proposed budget lowers the projection for real estate transfer tax revenue in 2012 after the township missed the budgeted real estate transfer tax revenue mark by $200,000 for 2011. As a whole, assessed property value in the township has leveled off since experiencing large reductions in 2010 and 2011. Click here to visit the Northampton Township website. The preliminary budget is available for inspection on-line.
Source: Advance; 11/30/2011
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