Townships Urged to Complete New FHWA Form by Dec. 31
Townships have had many questions about completing a new form they recently received from the Federal Highway Administration.
PennDOT is requesting that townships complete the FHWA Form 536 report on local government expenditures and revenues because it is not able to compile this information from other sources. Failure to submit this form could impact Pennsylvania’s share of federal transportation funds. While it is not required, PSATS recommends that members complete this form by December 31.
In response to member concerns about the new form, PSATS worked closely with PennDOT to develop a short version of the instructions. When completing the form, we recommend first consulting the short version of the instructions. If more information is needed, townships should then review the revised long version.
Click here for the form and both sets of instructions. If you have additional questions or concerns regarding Form 536 or did not receive a copy of the form, please contact Kristen Sims, PennDOT audit manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (717) 214-6161 and provide your township and county. Ms. Sims will provide the code and pin number that is required to access the form.
Deputy Tax Collector Clarification
Recently enacted Act 164 of 2014 requires elected tax collectors to appoint a deputy tax collector to temporarily act on behalf of the elected tax collector if they become physically or mentally incapacitated and are unable to perform the duties of office or resign. The appointment of the deputy is subject to approval by the board of supervisors and the elected tax collector’s bonding company. In this case, the deputy tax collector would collect any outstanding real estate taxes on behalf of the elected tax collector, acting under the tax collector’s bond. The appointment of the deputy should be made as soon as possible.
Click here for more information about Act 164 of 2014, including a sample form to appoint the deputy.
Bid Limits Set to Increase on Jan. 1, 2015
The minimum purchase amount that requires legal advertisements and sealed bids will increase from $19,100 to $19,400 on January 1, 2015. In addition, the minimum purchase amount for telephone quotes will increase from $10,300 to $10,500 in 2015.s by Pennsylvania's townships of the second class are set to increase January 1.
These increases are due to Act 84 of 2011. The law requires the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry to adjust these amounts annually based on the Consumer Price Index for the 12-month period ending September 30.
The rate increases were officially advertised in the December 13, 2014, edition of the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
IRS Increases Mileage Rate to 57.5 Cents Per Mile
The internal Revenue Service recently announced that the current standard business mileage rate will increase to 57.5 cents per mile effective January 1, 2015.
Township supervisors may implement this change by motion at a public meeting.
Survey of Financial Condition Submission Deadline Moved up to Feb. 11th!
The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development has announced that the 2014 Survey of Financial Condition form must be submitted by February 11, 2015, for municipalities to receive their state liquid fuels payments by March 1.
This is contrary to the initial information that DCED sent to all municipalities. That communication indicated that the 2013 report would be used to qualify for 2015 payments and that the deadline for the 2014 report would remain March 15.
Townships with questions concerning this form should contact the Governor’s Center for Local Government Services toll-free at (888) 223-6837.
DCED Offers Free, Downloadable Tutorial on E-Filing Process
Need a refresher on how to e-file forms with the state Department of Community and Economic Development?
The Governor's Center for Local Government Services has a free tutorial on the e-filing process available here.
The tutorial is a PDF document that covers accessing and logging into DCED's e-filing system, as well as how to file the following documents:
- Tax Information Form
- Report of Elected and Appointed Officials
- Survey of Financial Condition
- Annual Audit and Financial Report
Because the tutorial is a PDF, you can save it for future reference and even print any pages that you might refer to frequently.
If you have any questions, please contact the Governor's Center toll-free at (888) 223-6837.
Enter PennDOT's 2015 Build a Better Mousetrap Competition
Have you or one of your coworkers recently built an innovative gadget or developed a better way to do a road-related job? If so, now is the time to show off a project your municipality is proud of in the Build a Better Mousetrap Competition.
PennDOT is looking for projects that you, your employees, or crew designed and built. That can include the development of tools, equipment modifications, and/or processes that increase safety, reduce cost, improve efficiency, and improve the quality of transportation.
If you have something you think would qualify for this competition, submit your entry by Friday, March 6, 2015.
Entries will be judged by a committee of municipal road employees on:
- savings/benefits to the community;
- transferability to others; and
The winning entry will be submitted to a regional and national competition to compete for recognition and, of course, bragging rights. Winners of the national competition will be announced at the annual LTAP/TTAP national conference this summer. All entries at the national level will be posted on the LTAP/TTAP program website and compiled into an electronic booklet.
See this brochure for more information, including the 2014 winning entries and runners-up.(Congratulations to 2014 winner Upper Nazareth Township in Northampton County and to runners-up Lafayette Township in McKean County and Bushkill Township in Northampton County.)
If you have questions, please email email@example.com or call her at (717) 763-0930, ext. 156.
Consumer Price Index Rises 1.7% from Sept. '13 to Sept. '14
PSATS often receives questions about the annual cost-of-living increase. This figure is based on changes in the Consumer Price Index, which rose 1.7 percent nationwide between September 2013 and September 2014.
The total change over the previous 12 months is used by many to determine pay increases for the following year.
Click here for more about the CPI, which is adjusted each month.