First of all, it's important to realize that a lot of new construction have been assessed COMPLETELY incorrectly - the assessments in High Meadow on some of the active new construction are close to the actual sales price of the houses! At the moment I believe new construction in Berks County is supposed to be assessed at 65% of sales price, so for example if your house was originally $400,000 in price and now worth $350,000 in the current real estate market, you would be looking at an assessment of about $227,500, which would equal annual taxes at Amity Township millage rates of approx. $8,277.
This can be easily (well, maybe not that easily, but it can be) remedied by getting what's called a Comparative Market Analysis from a realtor showing the ACTUAL market value of your home as it stands right now, and then filing an Appeal with the Berks County Tax Assessment between July 1 and August 15 to change the assessment on the house to what it should be. (If you need help with this and you don't know who to call, I will certainly be willing to put a CMA together for you to use at a Tax Appeal.) You submit your paperwork, they call you in to present your case, and then hopefully issue your new assessment - and this has been very successful recently due to so many houses having lost value due to the market!
The link to go to the Berks County Tax Appeals web page is:
and you should find all the paperwork there necessary to file an Appeal.
Of course, unfortunately this won't help you with this year's tax bill. Depending on when you bought your house, this might have been possible to do last year in order to make sure that your actual assessment on your house came in at the correct assessment - unfortunately, the appeal will only affect next year's bill, but should ABSOLUTELY be done, because an $11,000+ bill makes it very difficult to sell a house later on.
If you were comfortable with the original $7700 tax bill, I would go down to the Tax Office at once and try to negotiate some kind of payment plan for the additional amount for this year, on the understanding that you escrowed for a completely different amount based on what you were told by the builder. Considering the amount of houses going into foreclosure or getting seized for non-payment of taxes, the County doesn't want any more houses on its books.
If you did have a Realtor working for you, they clearly didn't explain the situation as regards taxes on new construction (or maybe didn't understand it themselves), and if you didn't have a Buyer Agent, I can only stress how important it is to have a good one on your side in a deal involving hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Anyway, Good Luck! And if you do need further help with the documentation to reduce your taxes, you can always drop me a line!