Springfield Township Supervisor

York Dispatch

Two candidates are running for one seat for Springfield Township supervisor in the 2015 Primary election on Tuesday, May 19.

The York Dispatch asked them to answer three questions and provide basic bio information to help voters with their selection.

Their responses are:

Adam E. Sweitzer (R)

Age/Family: 31 (wife, Jenni and daughter, Audrey)

Occupation: Manchester Township Public Works/Farmer

Education: Dallastown Area High School

Community organizations with which you are active: Member of St. Peter's Church, Seven Valleys

Carroll P. Tignall Jr. (R)

Age/Family: 75. Married to Patricia and the parents of four grown children and grandparents of four growing children. I am the oldest of six brothers and sisters.

Occupation: Retired Senior Financial/Audit Systems Manager, Business Systems Consultant, and Information Technology Consultant with extensive experience at the Local, State, and Federal Government and the Private Business sector.

Education: B.S. Degree in Management/Accounting at the University of Baltimore and Graduate Study at the George Washington University Graduate School.

Community organizations with which you are active: Elected York County Republican Committeeman for Springfield Township. York 912 Patriots Leadership Team. Logan Greens Community Association Board of Directors and Treasurer. Former Elected School Director for the Dallastown Area School District. Parishioner of Saint Joseph Church of Dallastown. Part time volunteer and contributor at the Little Sister of the Poor St. Martin's Home for the Elderly.

Questions and answers

1. How would you rate the township's performance at keeping taxes (especially property taxes) affordable for residents while providing adequate services? Why?

Sweitzer: Springfield Township has an excellent record of government service at a very low rate of taxation. Our property tax is 1/2 a mill — among the lowest in the county. (i.e. If you had a home assessed at $100,000, you would pay Springfield $50 a year in property tax). This, along with the earned income tax, has been sufficient in meeting all of the challenges within our township. Springfield Township has been able to maintain the township roads as well as update trucks and equipment so I feel that shows effective performance when you are working with a low rate of taxation.

Tignall: I believe that Springfield Township has done a reasonably good job of keeping taxes to a manageable level in spite of out-of-control spending and mandates at the federal and state level. The elimination of property taxes is the number one priority of taxpayers. In my opinion it is the most egregious, immoral, and unconstitutional tax that results in the loss of 10,000 homes in Pennsylvania every year. No tax should have the power to take your home. The elimination of property taxes would create the greatest economic windfall for taxpayers in the history of the Commonwealth. Also, the maintenance of the township infrastructure is a difficult but necessary responsibility. However, most capital expenditures are subject to the prevailing wage law that adds 30 percent or more to the cost of most government projects thereby reducing monies available for needed improvements and delaying the completion of the projects. The prevailing wage law needs to be eliminated. And finally there are the continuing problems with the $54 billion funding deficit for the PA Pension systems. The State Legislature needs to repeal Act 9 of 2001 that gave legislators a 50 percent increase in benefits and 25 percent increase to all other State employees and replace it with a system that provides benefits based upon the investment earnings of the systems rather than taxpayer monies.

2. Other than holding down costs, what would be your top priorities if elected supervisor (or to another term as supervisor)?

Sweitzer: Our township, like surrounding municipalities, has faced population growth and I commend the planning commission in their handling of this growth, keeping most of it within close distance of the water and sewer services. As supervisor, I want to do everything possible to maintain the quality of life that makes our township a desirable place to live and raise a family, while providing all necessary services.

Tignall: Property taxes, pension deficit funding, prevailing wage, and federal and state mandates are major impediments to reducing the cost of government. Financial stability is a top priority for the township. It requires an open and transparent process that involves the taxpayers and provides easy access to township business online to board meeting agendas and meeting minutes, services provided by the township either directly or outside contractors, the proposed annual budget for public comment and the final approved budget in detail, as well as upcoming recreational and social events. The online website should provide links to York County government, state government and federal government agencies that provide services to township citizens. A significant portion of the annual budget is dedicated to highways, roads, and streets subject to prevailing wage law that increases the cost 30 percent or more, thereby limiting the availability of monies for planned maintenance and repair. The board should assure that an annual audit is conducted and a report issued insuring that the township is in compliance with all regulatory requirements and made available to the public within 30 days of board approval.

3. Why did you decide to run for township supervisor? Why should people support your candidacy?

Sweitzer:As a lifetime resident of Springfield Township and raising a family of my own, I feel it is important to be involved in my community.

I am dedicated to serving our township with our community's best interests in mind using my knowledge of Springfield Township's geography and history to help guide those decisions.

Tignall: Many elected officials swear an oath of office to preserve, protect, and defend the United States constitution and the Pennsylvania constitution but soon after being elected they ignore their constitutional responsibilities. Instead of serving the citizens that elected them, they serve themselves and their special interests. Some officials have even refused to prosecute other officials found guilty of violations and issuing directives that are illegal and/or unconstitutional. There is a growing mistrust of government, especially at the federal and state level. I decided to run for township supervisor to attempt to restore some trust and confidence in government and assure that the operations of the township are performed in an open and transparent manner, that land development is approved in accordance with the township ordinance, and that zoning enforcement is conducted in a fair and impartial manner. My previous experience as a senior financial/audit systems manager and business systems consultant in both the private and public sector will help me to serve the citizens of the township.