Holding the line on taxes for 14 years straight years shows what is possible through strong leadership and teamwork

HARRISBURG, PA (Wednesday, January 2, 2019) Pointing to a record-breaking 14 years of no tax increases, Dauphin County Commissioners Jeff Haste and Mike Pries announced their reelection campaign with a video on social media and a promise to, “keep moving in the right direction.’’

The video was shot at Detweiler Park – the county’s newest and largest park — to underscore their message of improving residents’ quality of life through good government, economic growth and preserving and protecting our community’s natural beauty for all to enjoy.

“We have made fiscal responsibility a top priority for our county and are proud to say that we have not raised county property taxes for the past 14 straight years,’’ Haste said. “We made our announcement at Detweiler Park because deciding what to do with this property will be an important goal for the future and one in which all residents will have a say.’’

Under their leadership, the county is also realizing the 30-year dream of linking the 20-mile Greenbelt to Fort Hunter Park, which until now counted Wildwood Park as its northernmost edge.

Pries additionally highlighted the nearly $68.7 million in Hollywood Casino gaming revenue they’ve invested in virtually every community in Dauphin County.

“Local governments would have had to spend millions in property tax dollars to pay for the equipment for firefighters and police, infrastructure projects and vital human service programs these grants funded,’’ Pries said. “These grants brought in an amazing $340 million in additional investments to our communities and helped to create more than 10,000 jobs.’’

Among their other accomplishments in office, Haste and Pries emphasized:

  • Fighting blight and saving neighborhoods: Haste and Pries led Dauphin County to become the first county in the state to take advantage of new state law to green-light a Land Bank and Infrastructure Bank. The Land Bank has allowed for the renovation of eyesores and the elimination of blight, from disused mill property in Steelton to creating new homes in Susquehanna Township and more. The Infrastructure Bank has made possible the repair of dangerous intersections and roads throughout the county.
  • Smart justice: First opened in 2013 to reduce the time police spent booking arrestees so they could return to patrol faster, new programs at county’s Judicial Center are saving taxpayer money by finding non-jail alternatives for low-risk offenders, as well as better coordinating addiction treatment and other services with either those going to jail or under supervised release. Consolidating operations with the adjacent prison also saved $500,000 in 2018 and a projected $800,000 this year.
  • Keeping our bridges safe: In another first-of-its-kind initiative, Haste and Pries created the Municipal Bridge Program, which uses state transportation-related funds to cover 40 percent of a municipality’s cost to repair or replace its bridge and offer ultra-low interest loans through the county’s infrastructure bank to cover the rest. Without this program, either local taxes would go up to pay for the work or bridges wouldn’t get fixed – at times creating dangerous situations if emergency responders are forced to take long detours.

Haste and Pries thanked the county’s row officers and employees, local officials and residents for their support over the years.

“We want to keep Dauphin County running in the right direction,’’ Pries said. “Today we humbly ask again for your support and your vote.’’

Paid for by Friends of Haste and Pries