Editor’s Note: This article contains corrections from the print version.
BARNEGAT – The Township Committee introduced a $25 million budget on March 7, which includes an increase in taxes of about $1.3 million.
The total proposed 2017 budget of $25,390,872 would be an increase of $1,244,791 over last year’s $24,146,081 budget.
The budget includes a municipal levy of $20,763,198, an increase of $1,313,203 from last year’s $19,449,995.
If passed, the municipal tax rate would be 90.1 cents per $100 of assessed valuation, an increase from last year’s 85.4 cents.
A homeowner living in a home assessed at the township average of $238,002 would have a municipal tax payment of $2,144, an increase of $112 from $2,032.
Mayor Albert Bille said the increase was comparable to other nearby towns.
“It seems to be a modest increase, that’s necessary. It’s a lot less than last year’s increase,” he said.
The local tax levy makes up the bulk of any municipality’s budget. Aid and other revenue makes up the rest. The budget anticipates using $800,000 of surplus, when in the previous year, there was only $510,000 used.
Many line items on the budget stayed pretty close to what they had been in 2016.
Key line items that had some change include:
Clerk’s office salaries, up $18,000 to $153,000
Administration salaries, up $20,000 to $165,000
Tax assessment salaries, up $6,000 to $216,000
Tax collection salaries, up $17,000 to $92,000
Legal services, up $25,000 to $300,000
Engineering services, down $10,000 to $155,000
Employee group insurance, down $50,000 to $1.85 million
Police salaries, up $65,000 to $6.5 million
Police dispatch salaries, up $48,000 to $200,000, but other expenses associated with that line item went down $140,000, to $170,000
Streets maintenance salaries, up $45,000 to $440,000, but other expenses went down by $80,000 to $133,250
Vehicle maintenance salaries, up $17,000 to $212,000
Buildings and grounds salaries, up $30,000 to $315,500
Recreation salaries, down $40,000 to $245,000
Public employees’ retirement, up $37,300 to $492,300
Police retirement, up $88,000 to $1.32 million
The figures in this article do not include the budget for the county, school district, or other independent bodies.
The public hearing on the budget will be at the next Township Committee meeting, April 4.