The Moore Township Board of Supervisors met on Wednesday, October 25 for a proposed 2024 budget discussion and on Thursday, November 2 for their regular monthly meeting.
During the budget meeting, supervisors unanimously approved a resolution to apply for a statewide LSA grant for a speed trailer and three electronic solar-powered portable speed limit signs. Combined, the four items total roughly $30,000.
Next, supervisors unanimously approved a change in Public Works Department services to FirstNet for their communications.
Public Works Director Craig Hoffman explained that FirstNet makes small box radios that run off of their Rapid Response, and they also make a box for vehicles that employee radios clip into. The devices cost $0.99 each and the vehicle boxes cost $4,000 for 10 of them, which can be installed in-house. Switching services will increase the $240 current service plan to $385 per month; however, Hoffman noted that the FirstNet radios are more efficient for the department, provide extremely clear audio even from 100 miles away and ease communication barriers such as now being able to contact all employees at the same time via the radios rather than having to call each person individually like they’ve been doing with the current cell phone service plan.
Following, supervisors unanimously approved the purchase of three new electronic access doors for the municipal building at a cost of $16,875, which includes installation.
In other business, the 2024 preliminary budget that will be voted on during the December 5 monthly meeting does not include a tax increase.
Township Manager Nicholas C. Steiner predicts an earned income increase of 7.4% for the general fund account in 2024. However, some of the increased costs include: health/prescription insurance increasing 9-9.6%; worker’s compensation for paid staff increasing by 2.9% and 3% for volunteer firefighters; general insurance for property, auto, equipment and the fire department will be switching to McKee, which will have a 17% increase, whereas the current provider would have had a 29% increase; and a non-contract employees’ pay increase of 3%, a Public Works contract increase of 2.5% and a police salary wage increase of 2.75%.
Additionally, there are several big-ticket items included in the budget for engineering, police, public works and liquid fuels.
Engineering budget costs will be high in 2024 due to culverts, studies and MS4 projects. $30,000 was also budgeted for an architect to redesign the municipal building or to design a new one on the property behind the current building, due to the building requiring significant repairs and replacements.
For the police department, funding for eight radios was included in the budget, as well as funding for the PCCD body grants, new computers, two new AEDs for the police vehicles and one new police vehicle.
For the Public Works Department, $375,000 was included in the budget for MS4 upgrades that have been pushed off in previous years, $300,000 was budgeted for asphalt and between liquid fuels and the general fund, $600,000 is budgeted for roadway paving and fixing/replacing failing culverts. The liquid fuels budget also includes paying off the freightliner and $10,000 for guardrails.
During the regular monthly meeting, supervisors unanimously approved the Timothy Rosa lot line adjustment waiver request for five Stormwater Ordinance sections and also granted the applicant conditional approval.
Under reports, Fire Police Captain Jason Harhart reported that the Klecknersville Rangers Vol. Fire Co. responded to 85 ambulance calls during the month of October and 22 fire calls, which included three motor vehicle accidents, one fire police, one automatic fire alarm, eight ambulance assists, two smoke investigations, one for wires down, one for trees down, four mutual aid calls with Bath for three Fire Police and one carbon dioxide alarm, and one dwelling fire with Lehigh Township.
In other business, supervisors approved hiring an ordinance review professional to assist with environmental planning and design.
During the Edelman Schoolhouse renovations, it was discovered that the joists are in need of more repair than originally thought, so the board unanimously approved an additional $3,000 for the project, which will come out of the Edelman Schoolhouse account.
The board also unanimously approved a resolution that establishes Jason Harhart as the open records officer that will take care of right-to-know requests, as well as an ordinance to repeal the amusement tax.
Additionally, the board approved Manager Steiner’s letter of resignation with his last day being November 10 and authorization to advertise the job posting for a full-time manager/treasurer. Steiner will still be helping out part-time until the township finds a suitable replacement.
Last, supervisors approved a special end-of-year meeting to pay bills and discuss any other business that needs to be addressed before the fiscal year ends, which will be held on Monday, December 18 at 5 p.m. The next Moore Township Board of Supervisors regular monthly meeting will be held Tuesday, December 5 at 6 p.m. in the municipal building, located at 2491 Community Dr.