If you live and own property in Tunkhannock Township, you can likely expect your taxes to go up for 2019.
During the regular supervisors’ meeting Monday night, there was some discussion about a differential of around $49,000 between projected expenditures ($1,529,169) and revenues ($1,480,250), but the board said there was some contractual matter that needed to be discussed in executive session, and so the decision to raise the real estate tax rate by one mill was made after the public had left.
The supervisors, however, re-opened the public portion of the meeting with Secretary Judy Gingher present.
She said Glenn Shupp put the measure on the floor, Hoyt Keiser seconded it, and Randy White affirmed it.
Gingher said the one mill increase would likely generate $69,000 in new revenue.
She said that of all the increases in expenses from year to year, the largest increase in budget item was a 2018 police budget of $554,000 expected to rise to $577,120 in 2019.
She said it was the first real estate tax increase in the township since 2002, although the township did begin assessing a fire tax in 2016.
Gingher noted that the 2019 budget would be advertised Nov. 14 as being available for public inspection for 20 days, and a tax increase would not become policy until the supervisors voted on the matter at their Dec. 3 public meeting.
She said with the extra mill, revenues for 2019 were projected at $1,549, 250, leaving a surplus of $20,000.
In other business, Tunkhannock Township Police Chief Edward Morristell with Police Commissioner White nearby promoted Patrolman John B. Zdaniewicz to the rank of Corporal.
Chief Morristell said that Zdaniewicz had been with the township police force for eight years.
“We put a lot of trust in you with this promotion,” Chief Morristell said, “but we know from your past service you will do a great job.”
White offered his congratulations, noting the promotion “was really well deserved,” and the other two supervisors agreed.
In his roadmaster’s report, Ken White said that Sunnyside Road would be closed for a month while the Linde Corporation was digging a trench and laying a pipe that would eventually bring natural gas to the residents of Tunkhannock Borough.
In a discussion about the proposed plan to allow for a D&C gas station along Route 6 opposite Keystone Caps, Gingher said the supervisors were advised by township solicitor Paul Litwin that they needed before signing off on a PennDOT highway occupancy document to make sure the developer took responsibility for maintenance of a traffic light as well as overhead lighting.
Gingher also spoke to the demolition and mold remediation of previous damage done in the township office. She said that the township’s insurance carrier said the township could expect $23,707 with no deductible for cleanup costs.
The township also received notification from the Department of Environmental Protection that BKV Operating LLC was revising drilling permits with the Mirabelli gas drilling pad in Washington Township; and the Susquehanna River Basin Commission had been notified of a renewal application for water withdrawal by Shadow Ranch from a site near the old police barracks near the Tunkhannock Creek opposite the Shadowbrook Golf Course.