No new township taxes in South Fayette
South Fayette Township’s 2016 draft budget calls for no new taxes, but residents may have to begin paying for their garbage to be collected.
The proposed $9.70 million budget for next year is a slight increase – 1.35 percent, or $130,000 – over this year’s budget of $9.57 million. Property taxes are expected to remain at 3.48 mills, said Ryan Eggleston, township manager.
But to fund needed paving and repairs to the township’s 65 miles of roads, Eggleston proposed a “pay-to-pave” program where a township resident under the age of 66 would pay $17.91 a month, or $53.73 a quarter for trash pick-up. This, in turn, would free up $750,000 in the township budget, monies that could go toward road paving and materials for in-house road improvements, he said.
“Pay for pick up and pave the roads,” Eggleston said during the Nov. 11 commission meeting.
Under the proposed 2016 garbage collection plan, the $17.91 a month fee would cover curbside, garbage, recycling, as well as leaf and electronics collection. A third-party waste company would directly bill residents for the service, akin to what utility companies already do, he said.
Residents who are 66 and older could receive the service for free, said Eggleston, who noted the age cut off is tied to Social Security retirement and $213,000 has been set aside to fund this part of the plan.
“This is a proposal for the board to consider,” said Eggleston, adding that residents of nearby North Fayette, Oakdale and Bridgeville pay for trash removal. “This is a way to capture a dedicated funding mechanism.”
Residents at the Nov. 11 meeting had mixed feelings about paying for trash collection.
“I consider it a tax,” said Stacy Kosky, who lives on Millers Run Road.
The township will discuss the draft budget and the garbage collection plan at its Dec. 2 meeting. The commissioners will vote on the budget at the Dec. 9 meeting.
In other matters, the commission will start meeting once a month on a trial basis instead of two times beginning in January. Currently, the commission meets the first and second Wednesday every month at 7:30 p.m. They also agreed to start the meeting at 7 p.m. in 2016.
The commission’s first monthly meeting serves as its workshop meeting, where business is discussed. That meeting is followed a week later by the voting meeting.
“If we need to revise this, then we will,” said commissioner Lisa Malosh. “We are going to need some sort of measure, too, to see what the community thinks. I am all about eliminating waste.”
Eggleston said if the monthly meetings are not working out, then the matter could be revisited in April.