By Mark Rosman
ALLENTOWN – The Allentown Borough Council has introduced a $2.45 million budget that will raise the year’s municipal tax by $22 for an individual who owns a home assessed at the borough average.
A public hearing on the 2017 budget has been scheduled for April 18.
The $2.45 million budget will be supported by a tax levy of $1.54 million to be collected from residential and commercial property owners, according to the budget document.
Other sources of revenue will include $380,400 from Allentown’s surplus (savings) account, $136,000 from a lease agreement for a cellular antenna site, $119,384 in energy receipts tax revenue and $131,595 in state aid.
Chief Financial Officer June Madden said the estimated 2017 municipal tax rate will be 79.9 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The average home in Allentown is assessed at $289,483 and the owner of that home will pay $2,312 in municipal taxes.
Allentown’s 2016 budget totaled $2.36 million and was supported by a $1.52 million local tax levy, $302,000 from surplus and the receipt of $131,595 in state aid. The municipal tax rate was 79.4 cents, the average home assessment was $288,582 and the owner of that home paid $2,290 in municipal taxes, according to borough officials.
The municipal tax rate will have a different impact on each property owner depending on the assessed value of his home and/or property.
Municipal taxes are one component of a property owner’s total tax bill. Allentown property owners also pay Upper Freehold Regional School District taxes, Monmouth County taxes and other assessments.
Borough officials have included the following selected appropriations in the 2017 budget: police salaries, $497,000 (up from $483,500); police operations, $47,253 (up from $45,353); total salaries and wages, $770,910 (up from $688,290).
And, fire services (to Upper Freehold Township), $140,000; municipal court services (to Plumsted Township), $27,200; engineering services, $97,500 (up from $95,000); legal services, $75,800 (down from $80,800).
Also, payments to the Police and Firemen’s Retirement System of New Jersey, $84,477; payments to the Public Employees Retirement System, $16,301; payments to the Public Employees Retirement System-early retirement, $13,199.
And, aid to the volunteer fire company, $34,000; First Aid Squad contribution, $23,850; health insurance costs, $194,500 (employees will pay $24,000 of that amount).