Taxes hold steady in Upper Macungie
BY SUSAN BRYANT
Upper Macungie Township Finance Director Bruce Koller confirmed to supervisors no tax increase is projected with the 2023 budget during his budget slide presentation Nov. 1 at the board’s meeting.
“There is no tax increase in this budget. We’re at .64 mills,” Koller stated. “We’ve been at .64 mills for many years.”
He said Supervisor Kathy Rader can go back for the number of years, as well the last time residents’ taxes changed because of a fire truck.
“The street lighting assessment you’ve seen on your tax bills in the past is going away for 2023,” Koller added. “We will be billing our utility bills on a quarterly basis.
“In the past it was annual, so you will be getting four bills. The first bill should go out in February.”
The annual fees for sewer are going to remain the same, he said.
“Refuse and recycling, we’re coming up on our third year with White Tail Disposal,” Koller said. “We’re going to increase the rate from $305 annually to $320 annually, it is a $15 increase. “
He then discussed how much a resident would have to pay the township in taxes on an assessed home value of $250,000.
“Obviously, we’re the lowest based on an assessed value of $250,000,” he stated. “You (resident) would pay roughly $160, and this is at face value.
“This is not including the discount (from) Lehigh County of $945 and then the school district is still less than $4,000 just to give you an idea where we stand in taxes.
“This is obviously a brief summary of the budget for 2023,” Koller said, before discussing a breakdown on the revenue for the township against cash reserves from prior years.
The board unanimously approved a motion to adopt the 2023 proposed budget and authorize an advertisement for its public display.
The next presentation was the 2021 financial audit report and slide presentation given by Michael Wascura, senior manager with Baker Tilly US LLP, Allentown.
“We’ve been performing the audit of the township the last three years,” Wascura said.
“These past three years have not been the normal three years that we would have expected going in with COVID and the environment just in general, but we are prepared to issue the 2021 financial statement audit.”
The full financial statement which are about 70 pages long provide a summary of what happened during the year, and it covers the audit results or the financial results of the year as well as the governmental activities represented in the general fund and all the normal operations of the township, Wascura stated.
He said the business type activities are the sewer and refuse funds which are kept separate, both show a strong financial position with assets significantly increased over liabilities.
“The largest liability of the general fund is actually some unspent American Rescue plan funds, which you’re spending some tonight and will be spent in the near future,” Wascura stated.
“Overall, the opinion on the audit is an unqualified, unmodified opinion, a clean opinion, the highest level of assurance that we can give or provide as auditors,” Wascura said.
“That’s all I have so I guess pending approval of it we’re prepared to work with Bruce (Koller) and Bob Ibach, (township manager) to execute the remaining items and you can move on to the next year.”
The board unanimously approved the 2021 audit as written.