Last updated: February 19. 2013 5:37PM - 393 Views

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SALEM TWP. – In what township supervisors termed a marginal hike, township residents will see an increase in real estate taxes to 1 mill in a proposed 2013 budget of about $1.3 million.

The budget reflects an increase in spending of more than $40,000 compared to 2012.

A mill is $1 in tax for every $1,000 in assessed valuation.

Supervisor Chairman Josh Kishbaugh said at Tuesday night's meeting the increase is conservative in comparison to several years ago when taxes were at 5 mills. Through reassessment in Luzerne County, he said, the supervisors were able to lower taxes to the .222-mill level of 2012, but, Kishbaugh added, the hike coincides with increasing costs for goods and services.

Other income is derived from a small levy for street lighting, real estate transfer, earned income and local services taxes. Township officials have also factored in an estimated $129,450 in state liquid fuel tax reimbursement.

On the other hand, at present, according to the treasurer's report, the township has $184,000 in certificates of deposit at the FNB Bank and $107,173 in a municipal savings fund.

Supervisors Kishbaugh, Joseph Siecko and Steve Fraind all voted to advertise the budget for adoption at the December meeting.

In another issue dealing with money, the supervisors said legal action has been taken against 15 residents who have failed to abide by sewage collection system regulations. Solicitor Anthony McDonald said liens have been filed against those who are reported to be in arrears on required tap-in fees, and now also owe a lien fee of $350 and are past-due on sewage system use fees.

In other matters:

• The supervisors discussed, but took no action, on imposing weight limits for trucks using township streets and roads.

• At the request of police Chief Robert Kishbaugh, candidates will be sought for an open, part-time police position.

• The supervisors approved a proposal by Computer Visionaries Inc. to upgrade the computer system in the township building at a cost of $8,408.

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