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Richland sees surprise in tax revenue

Preliminary data on the local economic impact of the pandemic has shown an improvement in Richland Township, with a 2.56 percent increase in Earned Income Tax (E.I.T.) revenue noted through July, compared to 2019.
The township’s E.I.T. collection for April had previously been noted as down to 60 percent of last year. The improvement announcement was made by Township Manager Paul Stepanoff as part of a special report at the Aug. 10 public board of supervisors meeting.
At the May supervisors’ meeting, Stepanoff had noted E.I.T. revenue for April, 2020 was down to 60 percent of that for April of 2019, while, E.I.T. revenue for the first quarter of 2020 was said to be similar to 2019. His comments at the August meeting were part of his summary presentation of a report from the ESI Group, which was engaged by the Bucks County Consortium of Township Managers to perform an analysis of 2020 and 2021 revenue loss projections for all municipalities in Bucks County due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
While Richland Township real estate tax collections were noted as down to date, the significance was said to await the results from the extension of the tax payment deadline, which Stepanoff said wouldn’t be fully realized until the end of the year.
Also at their Aug. 10 meeting, supervisors approved the preliminary/final land development plan for construction of a 90,000-square-foot warehouse on an 8-acre site along the western side of Heller Road, northwest of its intersection with Walnut Bank Farm Lane, which is in the township’s Planned Industrial (PI) Zoning District. The project had previously been reviewed by the township and county planning commissions.
Historically, the parcel is undeveloped, and sits between a storage facility and a distribution center. Plan considerations included stormwater management relevant to the project’s presence in the Tohickon Creek watershed.
Additionally in the PI district, supervisors approved a final plan for construction of a 209,000-square-foot warehouse and distribution building on a currently vacant, 59-acre site at the southeastern corner of East Pumping Station Road and Heller Road. Plan considerations included the feasibility of stormwater infiltration within the proposed stormwater management facilities at the site, which is presently grass, wooded, and agricultural-covered.
Officials announced that both the annual Community Day and separate Bike Rodeo would not be held this year due to the pandemic. Supervisors approved a resolution authorizing township participation in The Audubon Society Bird Town Program. The township’s Parks and Recreation Committee will serve as the agent for Bird Town and Bird Day processes.