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Township Expects Givers' Pinch

Cover of the township's tentative 2009 budget.

Tentative.

LOWER POTTSGROVE PA – The collapse of Wall Street, a national recession, and job layoffs all have contributed to a sharp decline in charitable giving statewide. The township Board of Commissioners apparently expects to feel that pinch, too, according to the township’s 2009 tentative budget.

Thanks to an occasional bequest or, more often, small donations from a grateful residents, Lower Pottsgrove in years past could anticipate contributions to community welfare or its Police Department of somewhere between $1,500 and $3,000 annually. The recent high point of giving to the township came in 2006, budget documents indicate, when donors volunteered $3,800 in miscellaneous revenue.

Next year, it seems, will be a far different story. The 2009 budget shows commissioners expect only $800 in gifts, about 60 percent less than the $2,167 projected to be received this year.

The donations represent only a small fraction of 1 percent of the township general fund income of $5.3 million. Instead, the budget relies on real estate and earned income taxes for about 49 percent of its revenue. Rates for both are expected to remain unchanged for 2009.

Final action on, and possible adoption of, the township’s budget package is scheduled for Thursday (Dec. 18, 2008) during the commssioners’ meeting at 7 p.m. in the municipal building, 2199 Buchert Rd., Sanatoga PA. The public may attend.

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