Montoursville borough eyes 0.3-mill tax increase

Montoursville property owners could be forced to reach a bit deeper into their pockets next year to pay real estate taxes.

A preliminary budget passed by borough council Monday night calls for taxes to increase from 3.0 to 3.3 mills.

Under the plan, homeowners with properties having an assessed value of $100,000 would pay an additional $30 in 2017.

Council approved the $2.23 million spending plan and tax increase by votes of 4-0.

Voting in favor were Eric Greenway, Mark Tillson, Tina Kline and Chris Lucas. Dave Moyer and Rosemary Holmes were absent.

Greenway noted that council was faced with a $211,000 deficit due in part to increased health care costs.

The good news, he said, is that borough services will remain the same under the budget plan.

With regard to the tax increase, Lucas said, “None of us are happy about it.”

He said the hope is to continue with needed infrastructure improvements.

“We are moving forward,” he said.

The final budget is expected to be passed at council’s next meeting on Dec. 5.

Council agreed to advertise an ordinance amending the police pension plan to provide for a deferred retirement option.

Streets/Water Commissioner Ronald Smith reported that cleanup from last month’s flooding has been completed.

He noted a section of the bicycle path damaged in the flooding may be eligible to receive government funding for repairs.

Kline and Mayor John Dorin reported that a number of residents contacted them to find out precise days for leaves pickup in parts of the borough.

Smith said pickup scheduling isn’t practical given the unpredictability of when leaves will come down around the community.

“We have found schedules for cleaning up leaves doesn’t work,” he said.