Local borough seeking to raise property taxes – WPXI

SHARPSBURG, Pa. — A local municipality is proposing a property tax hike as part of its proposed 2023 budget.

Channel 11 contacted Sharpsburg officials after hearing from concerned residents.

The proposal includes increasing the mileage rate by approximately 25% to 9.75.

It currently stands at 7.5 million, according to borough leaders, and the proposal therefore calls for an increase of 2.25 million.

This means that a property valued at $100,000 would pay $225 more in property taxes.

But according to county data, the median assessed value in the borough is $52,400, so the median increase would be $117.90 per year.

A local resident called the proposal “sad” and something that could hit older people particularly hard.

Borough leaders, however, told Channel 11 they had little choice in balancing the budget.

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Councilor Carrie Tongarm told Channel 11 that a recent audit found Sharpsburg had little or no reserve funds, which had been used to balance budgets in previous years. The borough does not generate enough revenue to cover basic expenses, she said.

“We explored everything,” Tongarm said. “We’re operating on a very tight budget…so there wasn’t a lot of wiggle room. We looked to cut things.

Tongarm said the proposal includes a reduction in street paving for the year, which is expected to save about $70,000.

“Frankly, there is not much to cut, and the only other options are loans or other sources of income, and in this climate, a loan is not a feasible or sustainable option and would not be certainly in nobody’s interest.”

She also noted that the borough is applying for a number of grants to help pay for improvements to infrastructure and other items.

Council members are due to vote on the budget at a public meeting on Thursday. Tongarm encouraged residents to reach out with questions or comments.

She said leaders had previously held several budget meetings announced and open to the public.

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