John Mack - Newtown Supervisor
Supervisors Vote to "Hang" the Preliminary 2021 Budget

Supervisors Vote to "Hang" the Preliminary 2021 Budget

At the sparsely attended November 25, 2020,
BOS meeting, resident Ash Kamath presented
a petition signed by nearly 400 residents who
oppose the proposed tax increase.

At the November 25, 2020, Newtown Board of Supervisors (BOS) meeting, the supervisors voted 4-1 (Kyle Davis voting "nay") to advertise (aka, "hang") the preliminary 2021 Newtown Township budget.

This was NOT an approval of the proposed budget. The earliest that supervisors can vote to approve the budget is December 22, 2020.

I voted to advertise the budget so that residents can finally see the numbers and to give them more time to suggest changes.

See the budget embedded below or download it here.

This is the first opportunity for the public to view the numbers and other details of the proposed budget. The public will have 20 days for this review after the advertisement appears in a local newspaper on Monday, November 30, 2020, before the BOS can vote to finally approve the budget OR a modified version of the budget.

What Changes Can Be Made?

Once the budget is "hung" only limited INCREASES in revenue can be made without re-advertising for 10 days, according to the Second Class Township Code, Section 3202:

“Upon any revision of the proposed budget, if the estimated revenues or expenses in the final budget are increased more than ten percent in the aggregate or more than twenty-five percent in any major category over the proposed budget, it may not be legally adopted with those increases unless it is again advertised once at least ten days before adoption and an opportunity given to taxpayers to examine the amended proposed budget. A major category is a group of related revenue or expense items, the combined total of which is listed as a line item.”

At the meeting, Newtown Solicitor David Sander confirmed that DECREASES in expenditures and/or revenues can be made WITHOUT re-advertising. This essentially gives the BOS more time to consider and vote upon reducing revenue and/or expenses to lower the proposed 133% increase in municipal property tax. 

The BOS will be able to vote on the final budget (including any agreed upon decreases in revenue & expenses) at the scheduled Dec 22 regular BOS session. Meanwhile, there is another regular BOS session scheduled for Dec 9 and a "work session" on Dec 14 where changes can be discussed. Changes can be made even at the Dec 22 BOS meeting and a special session can be called before Dec 31 to approve the final budget.

Register for the December 7, 2020, "Meet Mack Monday" Zoom "town hall" meeting where this budget will be discussed with interested residents.

Let's Put the Tax Increase in Perspective

The average Newtown Township homeowner such as myself pays about $4,800 in TOTAL property taxes each year. However, only about 3% of that – about $144 – is levied by Newtown Township. Bucks County gets $802 and the Council Rock School District (CRSD) gets a whopping $3,862!

Therefore, the 133% tax increase mentioned above applies to $144, which would increase to $336 for the average hownowner.

Related Content

The Preliminary 2021 Budget

Posted on 27 Nov 2020, 01:52 - Category: Budget

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The opinions expressed here are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
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