Butler Township’s 2024 budget does not include a tax increase
BUTLER TWP — Commissioners voted Wednesday, Nov. 22, to advertise a budget for 2024 which does not include a tax increase — a trend the township has continued since 2010. The proposed budget has about $11.9 million in general fund expenditures, which is about $1.7 million more than the 2023 budget.
Township manager Tom Knights said at Wednesday’s meeting that the township will also not collect a per capita tax in 2024, because of “a bunch of factors,” including the large task it is for administrators to gather. The per capita tax in Butler Township is typically $5.
“Annually commissioners make a determination on all those taxes,” Knights said. “Those are frozen by state law, so it can’t increase.”
At the township’s budget workshop meeting Nov. 9, the department administrators reviewed their funding needs for 2024. The highest budget requests came from the public works department, at a little over $321,300, and township police, at a little over $257,500.
Dave Meeder, director of public works, said the department will need a new dump truck, which costs an estimated $110,900, thousands of dollars more than the truck the department got last year.
Police Chief John Hays said costs have risen for police equipment, including for ammunition and vehicles. He said the department also is looking at upgrading computers and cellphones this year.
“We have to replace five desktop computers; we had five last year, one this year,” Hays said. “Everybody will have a newer computer; (and it) also covers the cost for the license plate readers and cameras, and also the annual subscription fee. Our computer maintenance I put in at $3,000.”
Sam Zurzolo, township commissioner vice chairman, said at the meeting the municipality’s administrators work hard to create a budget each year that does not require a tax increase.
“Evidently we’re doing something right to be able to operate like this and keep the police department up, the road department up,” he said. “Every department head … I’m very proud of them.”
Township commissioner Ed Natale also said the increased budget is able to be balanced without a tax increase because of the continued growth the township has experienced in recent years.
“The budget is going up, but we have other sources for us that we’re not raising taxes,” Natale said. “We have the development and people coming in and businesses.”