Rising cost of providing services prompts West View to hike taxes for first time since 2009 - North Journal

Rising cost of providing services prompts West View to hike taxes for first time since 2009

Wednesday, January 22, 2020 | 12:01 AM

For the first time in a decade, West View council has increased taxes to generate revenue needed to maintain the level of services provided by the borough.

The 16.7-percent increase raises the rate used to calculate property-tax bills from 5.4 mills to 6.3 mills.

The last time the borough raised taxes was in 2009 when the rate was increased by 1 mill.

A mill equals $1 for every $1,000 of a property’s assessed value, which means borough residents with a home valued at $100,000 will pay $630 this year to fund borough operations

The nearly $3.957 million spending plan anticipates more than $2.04 million will be generated from property taxes, which is the borough’s single largest source of income.

Other local levies such as the earned income, mercantile and real-estate transfer taxes are expected to generate more than $1.12 million this year.

The balance of the budget will be funded by money collected from fees, licenses, fines and transfers from the state.

As in most communities, the cost of providing public safety is the highest annual expense for the municipality.

West View has budgeted a little less than $1.47 million for police protection, $99,500 for fire fighting services and $41,700 for Ross/West View EMS.

Other significant expenditures in this year’s budget include $656,100 for the public works department, $285,00 for street resurfacing and $75,000 for snow and ice removal.

The borough also has budgeted nearly $224,000 for its pension and retirement obligations.

The borough also has budgeted $411,000 this year to pay for employee fringe benefits including hospitalization, eye and dental insurance.

Another $155,000 has been earmarked for liability, unemployment compensation and other insurances.