HAZLET – The Hazlet Township Committee has adopted a $21.3 million budget to fund the operation of the municipality during 2020.
The budget was adopted on June 23.
Hazlet’s residential and commercial property owners will pay $14.73 million in a local tax levy to support the municipal budget, according to the budget document that has been posted on the township’s website.
Other revenues in the 2020 budget include the expected receipt of $1.88 million in state aid and the appropriation of $1.2 million from the township’s surplus fund (savings).
Hazlet’s 2019 budget totaled $21.1 million and was supported by the collection of $14.26 million in local property taxes. State aid was $2.19 million and officials appropriated $2.45 million from the surplus fund.
From 2019 to 2020, total appropriations have increased by $200,000 and the tax levy has increased by $470,000.
In a presentation of the budget, Hazlet officials said they would “address budgetary and operational challenges post-COVID-19 to maximize economic recovery by re-evaluating all 2020 expenses; applying for federal, state and county grants to maximize non-tax revenues; and evaluating contingencies in the event of a reduction in state aid and local revenues.”
Municipal officials’ goals for the year include proceeding with a township-wide road restoration project; beginning the renovation of Hazlet police headquarters; expanding the application of recently purchased technology such as CivicEngage and CivicReady to automate processes and obtain feedback on service and non-emergency related issues; completing the new Natco building project; acquiring Spatial Data Logic municipal management software to improve the processing and tracking of construction, zoning and other permits, streamline staff workflow, and enable self-service access for residents; and renovating the Cullen Center and making improvements to Natco Park and Veterans Park.
In 2019, Hazlet’s municipal tax rate was 56.6 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The average home in the township was assessed at $324,863. The owner of that home paid $1,838 in municipal taxes.
In 2020, Hazlet’s municipal tax rate is projected to be 56.2 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The average home in the township is now estimated to be assessed at $338,918. The owner of that home will pay $1,905 in municipal taxes.
Municipal taxes are one item on a property owner’s tax bill, which also includes Hazlet Township Public Schools taxes and Monmouth County taxes.
An individual pays more or less in taxes depending on the assessed value of his home and/or property, and the tax rate that is set by each taxing entity.
The largest single appropriation in the 2020 budget is the salaries and wages that will be paid to Hazlet’s police officers, $5.22 million. The total amount to be paid in salaries and wages to municipal employees is $8.85 million.
The budget includes a $370,535 appropriation for other police department expenses and a $252,048 appropriation for police dispatch 911 salaries and wages.
Other appropriations include $2.38 million for employee group health insurance; $448,400 for workers compensation insurance; $712,000 for recycling salaries and wages; and $226,600 for recycling other expenses.
During 2020, Hazlet officials will pay $1.18 million to the Police and Firemen’s Retirement System of New Jersey; $362,331 to the Public Employees Retirement System; and $610,000 to the Social Security System.
Other appropriations include an $800,000 payment of bond anticipation notes and capital notes; and a $385,000 payment of bond principal.