Berkeley Municipal Budget Adopted

Berkeley Township Chief Financial Officer Fred Ebenau, right, reads an amendment to the township budget, while Business Administrator John Camera, and councilmen Angelo Guadagno and Keith Buscio look through paperwork. (Photo by Chris Lundy)

BERKELEY – The town budget was adopted at this week’s Township Council meeting. Although some of the figures changed, the end tax rate is still flat.

An amendment was passed that changed some of the line items, as some things have changed since the budget was originally presented at the end of March. A state recycling grant of $62,629.29 came in, and was applied to salaries and wages in the recycling division.

Other small changes were made, shifting a few thousand dollars from one line item to another.

Despite the changes, township residents won’t see any change in their taxes on the municipal level.

Berkeley Town Hall (Photo by Micromedia Publications)

According to township figures, the tax rate will be 61.8 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. This would be the same rate as 2016.

For a homeowner with the average assessment of $199,500, this would amount to $1,232.94 a year.

The total budget would be $45,272,831.36. It would be a decrease of almost a million dollars from last year’s $46,259,216.34.

The amount to be raised by taxation would be $31,566,481.97. This would be a decrease of $47,525.94 from last year’s $31,614,007.91

Spending had a slight bump over last year. It was raised $71,919.97 to $42,901,387.97.

Mayor Carmen Amato thanked the administration and the finance committee for their work on the budget that provided a decrease in the amount to be raised in taxation.

“In the post Sandy era, these budgets are extremely tight. Keeping taxes flat while providing the same level of services our residents expect was our goal. We were able to accomplish this by trimming the operational side of the budget, along with an increase in tax collection and a lastly, a mild winter,”

This budget includes the last $1.2 million in aid Berkeley received after losing a large chunk of ratables during Superstorm Sandy.