Millstone introduces $6M municipal budget


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MILLSTONE – The Township Committee has introduced a $6.28 million budget to fund the operation of Millstone Township for 2018. Officials said the same amount of money that was collected from residential and commercial property owners in 2017 will be collected in 2018.

Committee members introduced the budget on April 4. A public hearing on the spending plan will be held at 8 p.m. May 2 at the municipal court building, 215 Millstone Road. The committee may adopt the budget that evening.

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The $6.28 million budget will be supported by the collection of $2.59 million in taxes from property owners. Other revenue includes the use of $1.2 million from surplus funds (savings) and the receipt of $841,753 in state aid.

Millstone’s 2017 budget totaled $6.12 million and was also supported by the collection of $2.59 million in property taxes. Other revenue included the use of $944,746 from surplus funds and the receipt of $841,753 in state aid.

In 2017, the municipal tax rate was 13.9 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The average home was assessed at $534,230 and the owner of that home paid $743 in municipal taxes.

In 2018, the average home assessment is estimated to be $534,657. At the time of the budget’s introduction, officials did not provide a tax rate for 2018 or the impact of the tax rate on an individual’s municipal tax bill.

Municipal taxes are one component on a property owner’s tax bill, which also includes Millstone Township K-8 School District axes, Monmouth County taxes, a fire district tax and other assessments. Individuals pay more or less in taxes depending on the assessed value of their home and/or property.

Chief Financial Officer Annette Murphy said the municipal tax levy ($2.59 million) has remained stable since 2012.

“Foremost, and I think most importantly, we will once again maintain a flat municipal tax within our community for municipal taxes,” Mayor Gary Dorfman said before the committee members voted on the budget. “In the forthcoming year, we will have some increased spending into our roads program and storm related expenses, which will be partially offset by decreases in some of our debt costs.

“Further, we were able to reduce our reserve fund for uncollected taxes as a result of many taxpayers paying their 2018 taxes during the 2017 tax year,” Dorfman said. “Several of those individuals also had to pay back taxes. As a result of that, the reserves we would ordinarily keep on hand were not as necessary because people paid their taxes where they otherwise might not have.”

Road repairs and maintenance will increase from $381,971 in 2017 to $394,512 in 2018, while municipal debt service will decrease from $1.19 million in 2017 to $1.12 million in 2018. The reserve for uncollected taxes in 2017 was $830,000 and will decrease to $725,000 for 2018, according to municipal officials.

Following a presentation from Murphy regarding the budget, Dorfman, Deputy Mayor Nancy Grbelja and committee members Bob Kinsey and Fiore Masci voted to introduce the spending plan. Committeeman Michael Kuczinski was absent.

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