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Solebury projects surplus, no 2024 tax increase


The Solebury Board of Supervisors is expected to adopt a final 2024 operating budget with no tax increase on Dec. 12. It’d be the third straight year without a tax hike.

On Nov. 9, the board unanimously voted to advertise its preliminary 2024 budget, which shows a surplus of about $60,000.

Chair Mark Baum Baicker noted that the township’s 10-year Comprehensive Plan is slated to be updated next year and announced Supervisors Kevin Morrissey and Hanna Howe will be the liaisons to the Comprehensive Plan Committee (CPC).

“Perhaps the most important committee appointments Solebury Township supervisors can make are to the CPC (because it is that) document by which we effectively run the township,” Baum Baicker said.

He announced a roster of volunteers who have been interviewed by the board. They are: Eric Allen of the Environmental Advisory Council; Tim Luccaro, The Farm Committee; Margaret Newman, Historical Architectural Review Board; Elaine Crooks, Land Preservation Committee; Nancy Stock-Allen, Park and Recreation Board; Peter Brussock, Planning Commission; and at-large members James Searing, Katherine Reiss and Michael Kennerley.

The supervisors voted to hire the Bucks County Planning Commission to work with the CPC for a fee of $39,800.

Several appointments were also made to various boards. They are: Kellie Cummings, associate member to the Environmental Advisory Council; Michael Kerins to Parks and Recreation Board; and Robert McMahon to Historical Architectural Review Board.

In other business, the board authorized the Agricultural Security Area Committee to investigate if Temple Partners’ 11 acres on Sawmill Road should be included in the Agricultural Security Area.

The committee includes Supervisor Hanna Howe, Kaitlin Farbotnik, Tim Luccaro, Gary Manoff and Graham Phillips.

The board also agreed to pursue noise mitigation measures, such as fencing and sound barriers, at the township’s Laurel Park pickleball courts.

Baum Baicker said he and Manager Chris Garges, Assistant Manager Michele Blood, Dudley Rice of Park and Recreation, and Police Chief Dominick Bellizzie have met with residents Richard and Margaret Strucker to discuss the problem.

“A number of neighbors have also contacted the township in support of pickleball noise mitigation,” Baum Baicker added.

In Tuesday’s municipal election, Democrat Christy Cheever won a seat on the Solebury Board of Supervisors with 2,384 voters (63.7%) over Republican John DeAndrea with 1,357 votes (36.2%).

Baum Baicker, at the Nov. 9 meeting, offered “congratulations to Christy Cheever, who will become a member of the board of supervisors in January. Christy has been a big asset to the township through her work on the Environmental Advisory Council for several years and we very much look forward to having her join us.”

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