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Sellersville considers adding fire tax for 2020


Sellersville Borough Council anticipates that it will implement a real estate property tax in 2020 that will raise money to support fire protection services in the Upper Bucks town.

Borough Manager David Rivet said the anticipated Fire Real Estate Tax of three mills is expected to generate approximately $115,500 next year.

“The funds will be used by the borough to pay the costs for fire services and hydrant fees from North Penn Water Authority, with the rest going to the fire company to assist with their costs of running the department,” Rivet said.

Volunteers power the Sellersville Fire Department. Costs for essential training, equipment and more have continued to rise, officials say.

The volunteers enable Sellersville to enjoy fire protection at a fraction of the cost of what they would pay if the department were staffed throughout with paid, full-time firefighters, officials have said.

The three-mill tax would come on top of the 24 mills Sellersville property owners already pay in municipal real estate taxes.

Since the borough’s 2020 budget remains under development, it’s currently unclear if that 24-mill rate will remain the same, increase or decrease next year, Rivet said. If the rate remains the same, the millage a Sellersville property owner would pay next year in terms of borough real estate tax is 27.

A mill is equal to $1 of every $1,000 of a property’s assessed value. To calculate the municipal tax on a Sellersville property at the potential 27-mill rate, multiply the assessed value of the property by 27 and then divide by 1,000.

For instance, a Sellersville property assessed at $28,000 would pay $756 in borough property taxes. School and county levies comprise larger portions of the property tax bill.

Rivet said the 2020 municipal budget will be ready for supervisors to vote on by December. That vote will occur at a public hearing at which residents will be able to comment and ask questions.

The township manager noted the borough is considering capital improvements for next year as part of its budget planning.

“Current capital projects scheduled for 2020 include mill and overlaying work on Township Road, Chadwyck Circle and Nanlyn Avenue,” Rivet said.