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From the Desk of Carroll Valley Mayor Ron

(1/2011) Happy New Year everyone. A number of special seasonal activities occurred in December. On December 3rd, the Carroll Valley Citizens Association (CVCA) held their "Tree Lighting" event at the Borough Office. About 35 people braved the cold, windy evening. They were entertained by a unique mixed quartet singing barbershop group called the Quartessence. After the Christmas carols, Charles Dalton, the CVCA president, gave the signal and the tree outfitted with 85 strands of LED lights was lit up as well as the lights decorating the pavilion and walking bridge. Many were involved to make the "Tree Lighting" a memorable evening. Thank you CVCA, the Garden Club, the Carroll Valley Municipal Services and the Liberty Mountain Resort & Conference Center for allowing us to use two of their outdoor heaters.

Not as big but in spirit our decorated tree is in the league of Mayorís Michael Bloomberg tree in Rockefeller Center. On the morning of December 11th, I had the pleasure of attending the "Breakfast with Santa" event held at the Fairfield Fire and EMS hall. At 9:00 am, Santa Claus made an appearance, sat in his chair and was visited by our young sharing their wishes for Christmas day. Mike Kulkusky, who was Santa, shared with me how much he was filled with the true Christmas spirit listening to what the children were asking for. He told me that most of the children asked for gifts for their parents rather then for themselves. One little girl asked Santa to bring her mom a laptop so that "Mommy could go to work". Thank you Mike for sharing.

Thank you Andrew Aldrich, president of the Fairfield Fire and EMS, and the members of the fire company for preparing and serving breakfast. The cost of the breakfast was $3.00 for adults. Children 10 and under were free. All monies collected will go to a Fairfield area family in need. Again, thanks to CVCA for their participation. Special thanks to Annie and John Springer and their crew of volunteers who helped the children to create crafts.

If you are interested in viewing the pictures that were taken during this holiday season, go to www.ronspictures.net. You can download any picture to your hard drive and print your memory to share with family and friends.

At the December 14th Borough Council meeting, the council approved the 2011 Budget without any increase in taxes. At the same meeting, Ordinance #2-2010 was approved which fixed all real property tax within the Borough of Carroll Valley for the fiscal year 2011 at 1.7463 mills (the certified value provided by Adams County). If you are trying to estimate your tax bill, the first step is to find the assessed value of your property.

For example, letís assume the assessed value of your property is $200,000. In Adams County, you are taxed on 100% of this assessed value which is $200,000. As mentioned earlier, the millage rate is 1.7463 mils (per thousand) or .0017463. Now multiply $200,000 (your taxable value) by .0017463 (millage rate) to get your municipal (borough) property tax. In this case, $200,000 x .0017463 equals $349.26.

Please note that your tax bill consists of several different millage rates, namely: Adams County, Fairfield Area School District, and the municipality (Carroll Valley Borough). It is necessary to do the calculation for each governmental bodyís millage rate, and then add the totals to determine your entire tax bill. Your county and municipal taxes are combined to equal the "Spring" tax bill mailed in March of each year.

The School District taxes are sent separately in July each year. While no taxing district may collect any more revenue as a result of the reassessment than it did the previous year, there is an exception. After the millages are lowered and certified, the law permits the county and borough to increase overall revenue by not more than five percent (5%) and school districts by not more than ten percent (10%), not considering new construction growth. Again, Carroll Valley Borough has not increased taxes and as reported in the newspaper, the county doesnít plan to raise taxes. We will see what happens.

The hunting season is coming to an end. Antlered and antlerless deer archery hunting ends January 15th statewide. Hunters must adhere to safety zones restrictions. It is unlawful to hunt for, shoot at, trap, take, chase or disturb wildlife within 150 yards of any occupied residence, camp, industrial or commercial building, or school or playground without the permission of the occupants. It is unlawful to shoot into a safety zone, even if you are outside of the zone.

Driving game, even without a firearm or bow, within a safety zone without permission is unlawful. The safety zone for archery hunters statewide, including those using crossbows, is 50 yards. The Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC) has established a "Turn-In-a-Poacher" program and offers a reward to callers who provide tips that lead to the prosecution of those who kill endangered or threatened species or unlawfully take multiple big game animals (white-tailed deer, black bear, wild turkey and elk). Tipsters are asked to call the toll free telephone number (888) 742-8001 or the PGCís South-central Region office at (814) 643-1831.

As a past CVCA president, I would like for you to consider becoming a member of CVCA. An individual membership is $10.00 and $20.00 for a family. If you are interested in joining an organization that sponsors such events as the Egg Hunt, July 4th Golf Tournament, the Carroll Valley Yard Sale, the Tree Lighting, and Breakfast with Santa then join CVCA. Call Charles Dalton at (717) 642-5844.

The Borough will be holding the following meetings in January: Planning Commission (Jan 4th), Sewer/Water Authority (Jan 10th) and the Parks/Recreation Committee (Jan 26th). Hopefully, one of your resolutions for the new year is to try to spend more quality time with the family. Time really flies by quickly and you cannot go back.

See you around the Valley.

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