HOWELL – At a recent meeting, the Township Council voted to adopt the $51,065,000 Municipal Budget for 2018. Of that total, $26,804,765 will be raised by taxation.
The budget prior to the March 28 meeting of the council was at $51,350,000, according to Lou Palazzo, the chief financial officer for the township. After a proposed $285,000 in cuts to overtime increases, fuel costs, contingencies, communication services agreements, public works overtime, and the reserve for uncollected taxes, the budget was set at the current $51,065,000.
The tax rate will also decrease to 38.7 cents per $100 of assessed valuation in 2018 from the previous 39.7 cents of $100 per assessed valuation in 2017.
The budget revenue will consist of:
- Surplus: $6,195,000
- Miscellaneous revenues: $16,065,235
- Receipts from delinquent taxes: $2,000,000, and
- Amount raised by taxes: $26,804,765.
The total budget is increasing from the previous year’s adopted budget of $47,767,000, of which $26,338,557 was raised by taxation.
Councilman Robert Walsh made the motion to approve the budget during the meeting.
Mayor Theresa Berger noted during her “no” vote, “I almost feel like I am voting on the budget in protest,” citing concerns over budget cuts.
Deputy Mayor Robert Nicastro called Berger’s “no” vote “a shame.”
“You have a decrease in the tax rate. You have no services cut. Howell is on a financial, stable path. I think this is something that the residents should be very proud of,” said Nicastro, while commending the township officials on their work to reduce the budget.
The 2018 Municipal Budget was adopted with three “yes” votes from Walsh, Nicastro, and Councilwoman Evelyn O’Donnell, and a “no” vote from Berger.