Center Township, Snyder County, Pennsylvania
A farm in the township
Map of Snyder County, Pennsylvania highlighting Center Township
Map of Snyder County, Pennsylvania
|• Total||21.3 sq mi (55.2 km2)|
|• Density||101.5/sq mi (39.2/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of 21.3 square miles (55 km2), all of it land.
It is mostly a rural township, about an hour north of the state capital of Harrisburg. Pennsylvania Route 104 runs through the town of Penns Creek in the township. It is in close proximity to U.S. Route 522 and U.S. Route 11/15.
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,162 people, 732 households, and 575 families residing in the township. The population density was 101.5 people per square mile (39.2/km²). There were 778 housing units at an average density of 36.5/sq mi (14.1/km²). The racial makeup of the township was 98.61% White, 0.51% African American, 0.28% Native American, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.19% from other races, and 0.37% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.51% of the population.
There were 732 households out of which 37.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 68.0% were married couples living together, 6.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.4% were non-families. 17.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.88 and the average family size was 3.25.
In the township the population was spread out with 28.5% under the age of 18, 10.9% from 18 to 24, 30.2% from 25 to 44, 21.7% from 45 to 64, and 8.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 97.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 99.9 males.
The median income for a household in the township was $34,570, and the median income for a family was $38,875. Males had a median income of $29,250 versus $17,581 for females. The per capita income for the township was $13,240. About 7.3% of families and 10.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.1% of those under age 18 and 9.7% of those age 65 or over.
Ongoing pollution and soil erosion in the region continue to degrade the water quality and the environment locally as well as regionally. Farming, wastewater treatment facilities and industrial spills are cited as contributing factors to loss of water quality. It also contributes to the pollution of the Chesapeake Bay. Controlling the wastewater discharges alone is expected to cost local taxpayers billions of dollars.
The Lower Penn’s Creek Watershed Association’s central purpose is to protect, conserve, and improve the Lower Penn’s Creek watershed by promoting the wise stewardship of the land and aquatic resources. The organization is open to all citizens. The organization has sponsored a main stream assessment The Lower Penn’s Creek watershed is approximately 163 square miles (420 km2) within Snyder and Union Counties. It drains into the Susquehanna River on the northern border of the community of Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania. It is located within the Lower Susquehanna subbasin. LPCWA’s efforts contribute to the success of the missions of the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership and the Susquehanna River Basin Commission. The Snyder County Conservation District and the Union County Conservation District both have watershed specialists that participate in LPCWA.
Center Township is governed by three locally elected Supervisors. Supervisors serve six years term in office. Meetings are held on the first Thursday of each month at 7 p.m. at the Penn's Creek Fire Hall on Troxelville Road, Penns Creek, Pennsylvania. Center Township Municipal Building is located at: 374 Troxelville Road Middleburg. In 2014, they are: George M. Richard, Jr., Chairman, Maynard M. Keister, Vice Chairman and Ronald Rice. The Center Township Municipal Authority operates the local water treatment plant. Subdivisions are reviewed and approved by the Snyder County Planning Commission. Center Township is a member of Central Keystone Council of Government, which provides various governmental functions.
The Center Township Polling place is the Penns Creek Fire Hall. The Snyder County Election Calendar follows the state's calendar. Nomination Petitions can be obtained at the Commissioners Office in the Snyder County Courthouse.
Residents are also governed at the county level. There are three, elected at large, Snyder County Commissioners. In 2014, they are: Joseph E. Kantz, Chairman; Malcolm L. Derk III, Vice Chairman and Peggy Chamberlain Roup. The County levies several taxes and receives funding from both the state and federal government. The County is mandated by the Pennsylvania General Assembly to provide many social services to residents. Snyder County is a member of SEDA COG which provides the county various services. The County levies a property tax. For 2014, the County budget was set at $16.7 million.
Center Township is in the 85th Legislative District for the Pennsylvania General Assembly held by Fred Keller  whose office is located on 343 Chestnut Street, Suite 1 Mifflinburg. Pennsylvania Senate District 27th is held by Senator John Gordner.
Center Township is in the United States House of Representatives Pennsylvania 10th District held by Rep. Tom Marino. Pennsylvania is represented in the United States Senate by Senator Bob Casey, Jr. and Senator Pat Toomey.
The average yearly property tax paid by Snyder County residents amounts to about 2.79% of their yearly income. Snyder County ranked 728th out of the 3143 United States counties for property taxes as a percentage of median income. Snyder County collects, on average, 1.17% of a property's assessed fair market value as property tax. According to a report prepared by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, the total real estate taxes collected by all school districts in Pennsylvania rose from $6,474,133,936 in 1999-2000 to $10,438,463,356 in 2008-2009 and to $11,153,412,490 in 2011. Property taxes in Pennsylvania are relatively high on a national scale. According to the Tax Foundation, Pennsylvania ranked 11th in the U.S. in 2008 in terms of property taxes paid as a percentage of home value (1.34%) and 12th in the country in terms of property taxes as a percentage of income (3.55%).
Residents of Center Township may attend the local, public schools operated by Midd-West School District which provides full day kindergarten through 12th grade. In 2013, the Midd-West School District's enrollment declined to 2,200 students. In 2011, Midd-West School District enrollment was 2,202 pupils. The District's enrollment was 2,388 pupils in 2005-2006 school year. Midd-West School District operates: Midd-West High School (8th-12th), Midd-West Middle School (6th-7th), Middleburg Elementary School (K-5th), and West Snyder Elementary School (K-5th). In 2013, Midd-West School District’s graduation rate was 86%. In 2011, under the leadership of Dr. Wesley Knapp, Superintendent, Midd-West High School has placed on the state's Lowest Achieving Schools List.
In 2013, the Pittsburgh Business Times ranked Midd-West School District 313th out of 496 public schools for academic achievement of its pupils. In 2012, Midd-West School District achieved Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) despite the low academic achievement at the high school. In 2011, under the leadership of Dr. Wesley Knapp, Superintendent, Midd-West High School was placed on the state's Lowest Achieving Schools List.
High school aged students can attend the taxpayer funded SUN Area Technical Institute, located in New Berlin, Union County, for training in: the building trades, auto mechanics, the culinary arts, allied health careers and other areas. SUN Area Technical Institute is funded by a consortium of the school districts, which includes: Midd-West School District, Lewisburg Area School District, Shikellamy School District, Mifflinburg Area School District and Selinsgrove Area School District. The school district pays the tuition for the student.
Center Township residents may also apply to attend any of the Commonwealth's 14 public cyber charter schools (in 2013) at no additional cost to the parents. This includes SusQ Cyber Charter School which is locally operated. The resident’s public school district is required to pay the charter school and cyber charter school tuition for residents who attend these public schools. The tuition rate that Midd-West School District must pay was $9,626.31 in 2012. By Commonwealth law, if the District provides transportation for its own students, then the District must provide transportation to any school that lies within 10 miles of its borders. Residents may also seek admission for their school aged child to any other public school district. When accepted for admission, the student's parents are responsible for paying an annual tuition fee set by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit #16 provides a wide variety of services to children living in its region which includes Center Township. Early screening and intervention, special education services, speech and hearing therapy, autistic support, preschool classes and many other services like driver education are available. Services for children during the preschool years are provided without cost to their families when the child is determined to meet eligibility requirements. Intermediate units receive taxpayer funding: through subsidies paid by member school districts; through direct charges to users for some services; through the successful application for state and federal competitive grants and through private grants.
Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania is a public university located in Bloomsburg. It is one of the 14 state universities that make up the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE). Eleventh and twelfth grade students may attend the University at a significant tuition discount through its Dual Enrollment program earning college credits while still earning their high school diploma. The university operates a summer college program called ACE , where high school students can earn credits at a 75% tuition discount. The credits are transferable to many other Pennsylvania universities through the state’s TRAC system. 
Community members have access to the Snyder County Public Library System which is headquartered at the Rudy Gelnett Memorial Library, 1 N High Street, Selinsgrove. Through it Pennsylvania residents have access to all POWER Library online resources. Township residents may also use the Beavertown Community Library on 111 West Walnut Street, Beavertown, the Middleburg Community Library, 13 North Main Street, Middleburg and the McClure Community Library located at 4 Library Lane, McClure.
The Keene Community Park is located in the township.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- Pennsylvania Governor's Center for Local Government Services (2005). "Township Supervisor's Handbook".
- Snyder County Commissioners, Directory of Local Officials, 2014
- Central Keystone Council of Governments (2014). "Snyder Members".
- Snyder County Planning Commission (2006). "Snyder County Hazard Mitigation Plan Section 5".
- Snyder County Commissioners, The Commissioners of Snyder County, 2014
- Governor's Center for Local Government Services (June 2003). "Citizen's Guide to Pennsylvania Local Government".
- Governor’s Center for Local Government Services (2003). "County Commissioners Handbook".
- Marcia Moore (December 31, 2013). "Snyder County commissioners approve budget". The Daily Item.
- PA General Assembly website (2014). "Snyder County PA Legislators".
- Tax-rates.org., The 2013 Tax Resource County Property Taxes 2013, 2013
- Pennsylvania Department of Education, Pennsylvania School Finances - Summaries of Annual Financial Report Data 2010-2011, 2011
- New Census Data on Property Taxes on Homeowners, Tax Foundation, September 22, 2009.
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (October 4, 2013). "District Fast Facts - Midd_West School District".
- National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data - Midd-West School District, 2011
- Pennsylvania Department of Education, Enrollment and Projections by LEA 2005-2006 - 2020, July 2010
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (October 4, 2013). "Midd-West High School School Performance Profile 2013".
- Francis Scarcella (July 31, 2012). "Knapp says Midd-West test scores are up". The Daily Item.
- Pittsburgh Business Times (April 5, 2013). "Guide to Pennsylvania Schools Statewide ranking 2013".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 21, 2012). "Midd-West School District AYP Overview 2012".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (2013). "Charter Schools".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (2013). "What is a Charter School?".
- Central Susquehanna intermediate Unit 16 Administration (2014). "About the CSIU".