Low-interest loan is boon to road program in Lower Makefield Township

By Chris English

Borrowing $1.65 million to help fund a $3 million road improvement program for 2022 seems to be working well for Lower Makefield Township officials.
At their Feb. 16 meeting, township supervisors voted unanimously to approve a loan offer from TD Bank with a three-year repayment period at annual interest rates of 1.52%.
That’s well below the 3.5 percent annual rates budgeted for the loan and will save the township about $47,000 in interest payments over the three years, township manager Kurt Ferguson estimated.
Total interest at budgeted rates would have been about $90,000, but with TD rates it would only be about $43,000, he added.
“It’s ridiculous, it’s unbelievable,” Supervisors chairman James McCartney said. “That’s an incredibly low rate.”
The plan is to repave all or part of 56 roads this year totaling more than 11 miles. Ferguson said the loan will allow the township to essentially do four years of repaving in one and help mitigate increases in paving costs from year to year.

“It’s a cheap way to pave more roads,” supervisor Fredric Weiss said at the meeting.

Supervisors also voted to announce a required order accompanying the loan and are expected to vote on whether to approve the order at the March 16 meeting, township attorney David Truelove said.

In other meeting business, council members approved a $1.16 million payment to the Falls Township Authority for under-billing Lower Makefield System sewage treatment in 2020 and 2021. .

“It was an oversight on their part (TOFA),” Ferguson said. “They charged us for only one meter (tracking treated sewage) and not both. The good news is that it’s not like we didn’t plan for this and we have the money to pay .

Lower Makefield is selling its sewage system to Aqua Pennsylvania for $53 million, with the deal tentatively closing on March 4.

Supervisors also approved expenditures of $26,561 for cameras and a switch that will improve the township’s meeting broadcast system.

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