Dormont Council on Monday approved the borough’s Fiscal Year 2013 Budget with a new—and lower—tax rate and plans to make a number of improvements in the borough.
The millage rate appears to have decreased drastically, but the adjustment accounts for higher assessment rates on borough properties. As a result of Allegheny County’s reassessment process, assessed property values in Dormont went up about 52 percent.
In the 2013 budget, the borough’s millage rate was decreased from 14 mills to 8.97 mills. Council initially planned to lower the rate to 9.1 mills, but decided to further lower the rate after discussion at the Dec. 3 council meeting.
This means that the property tax rate is $8.97 per $1,000 of assessed property value. Taxes on a $100,000 house will be about $897.
Borough solicitor John Rushford said there likely will be an opportunity to readjust the millage rate again if needed. Rushford said Allegheny County will not complete the reassessment appeals process until Dec. 31 or later, so it could be January or February before Allegheny County has set the county's millage rate.
Borough manager Jeff Naftal said regardless of the county's situation, municipalities are required to adopt a budget by the end of the year. He said he is confident in the numbers the borough used in its budget, but said that should the county's millage rate turn out to be much higher or much lower than expected, the numbers likely can be adjusted.
After real estate reassessments are done, municipalities are required by the state to adjust millage rates so that there is not higher than a 5 percent increase in tax revenues to the municipality. Council did not approve an increase, but the budget still accounts for a number of improvements in the borough.
The budget includes the reconstruction of one borough road, repaving of nine other borough roads, purchasing equipment and making repairs to the gym. Funds for the addition of one new police officer, one new street department employee, one new parks department employee, and the new positions of clerk supervisor, code enforcement officer and borough engineer also are included.
A detailed breakdown of the budget is provided in a report by Naftal. The report, as well as a copy of the final budget, are attached to this article as PDF documents and also are available on the Dormont Borough website.