The Bucks County Commissioners voted Wednesday to increase taxes to cover rising costs in the 2020 budget.

On average, Bucks taxpayers see $880 taken from their paychecks for county taxes. But next year, that amount will increase by about $36 to more than $900.

The 2020 budget includes a 4.6% spending increase from 2019, for a total of $452.6 million.

Cover of the 2020 budget.
Cover of the Bucks County 2020 budget.

The new tax increase will generate an estimated $8 million for the county government. Another portion to offset the increase comes from, in practical terms, a $7.6 million withdrawal from the $33.2 million general fund balance.

“Much of the shortfall was attributed to increased pay and benefits for employees, along with reduced revenues in some departments,” according to a statement.

Commissioner Chairman Rob Loughery and Commissioner Diane Ellis-Marseglia voted to approve the increase. Commissioner Charlie Martin voted alone against it.

“It again was a challenging year, and putting together this budget for 2020 wasn’t easy,” Loughery said, “but I think we’ve come up with an in-the-middle sort of solution before us here today.”

Marseglia applauded the budget including provisions for additional staff in the Children & Youth Social Services agency.

“This is going to be a budget that’s good for children,” she said.