Chester County announces 2015 preliminary budget that holds tax rates at same level as last year
● By Lev
The Chester County Commissioners unveiled the preliminary 2015 county budget. The proposed budget does not increase taxes for county property owners.
Presenting the preliminary budget to the Commissioners at today’s Sunshine meeting, Mark Rupsis, County Chief Operating Officer said, “We continue to produce results while also reducing the size of government.”
Commissioners’ Chair Ryan Costello commented, “This budget reflects our commitment to providing high value for our citizens as cost effectively as possible, and our budget process demonstrates the importance we place on transparency and accountability. This is all achieved through the diligent teamwork of our department heads, their staff and our finance department.”
The preliminary 2015 budget calls for $432 million in operating expenses and $89 million for its capital budget.
Commissioner Kathi Cozzone said, “Our 2015 proposed budget aligns with the strategic plan priorities that we re-established last year, and many of our projects and services for 2015 will help us advance the goals that meet those priorities. These include continued investment in our emergency voice radio system and the public safety training campus, the establishment of a shuttle bus service from Exton train station to West Chester, the implementation of the County’s economic strategy VISTA 2025, and a mental health facilities study. I’m grateful to our employees who continue to provide quality services critical to the health and safety of our citizens, at a reasonable cost to our taxpayers.”
Commissioner Terence Farrell added, “In addition to the alignment with our strategic plan priorities and goals, the 2015 proposed budget recognizes and addresses the current fiscal environment where we see a minimal increase in federal and state funding, and a slightly increasing tax base. We have achieved a budget that maintains the programs and services our citizens deserve and want, but at no additional cost to the taxpayer.”
Chester County’s tax rate is one of the lowest in southeast Pennsylvania. The 2014 Median Assessed Value of a home in Chester County is $166,285 and the proposed county tax bill for that value is $692.24.
Chester County’s 2015 preliminary budget will be presented at a public hearing on Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. in the Commissioners’ Board Room, 6th floor, 313 W. Market Street in West Chester.