Freehold Township school board introduces $84M budget for 2021-22

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FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP – The Freehold Township K-8 School District Board of Education has introduced an $83.9 million budget that will fund the operation of the district during the 2021-22 school year.

Following a discussion among district administrators and board members, the budget was introduced on March 9. A public hearing is scheduled for April 27. The budget, which may be revised until that date, may be adopted by the board following the public hearing.

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The budget for the upcoming school year will be supported by a tax levy of $73.5 million to be paid by Freehold Township’s residential and commercial property owners. The district’s state aid will increase by $151,125, from $4.61 million in 2020-21 to $4.76 million in 2021-22.

The school district’s 2020-21 budget totaled $83.6 million and was supported by a tax levy of $72.9 million.

In 2020, the average home in Freehold Township was assessed at $426,000. The K-8 school tax rate was $1.074 per $100 of assessed valuation. The owner of a home assessed at that amount paid about $4,575 in K-8 school taxes.

In 2021, the average home in Freehold Township is estimated to be assessed at $444,200. The K-8 school tax rate is projected to decrease to $1.044 per $100 of assessed valuation. The owner of a home assessed at that amount will pay about $4,637 in K-8 school taxes.

K-8 school taxes are one item on a property owner’s tax bill, which also includes Freehold Township municipal taxes, Freehold Regional High School District taxes, Monmouth County taxes and a fire district tax.

Individuals pay more or less in taxes depending on the assessed value of their home and/or property, and the tax rate that is set by each taxing entity.

“The 2021-22 budget is reflective of the savings the district has experienced by moving to a self-insured model of health insurance,” Superintendent of Schools Neil Dickstein said upon the budget’s introduction.

“We were pleased that we were able to include in the budget staff positions and instructional resources that allow us to maintain a high quality educational program without a tax levy increase.

“Unfortunately, Chapter 44 state legislation (relating to health care coverage) has cost the district $700,000, which is directly correlated to the increase in our share of the tax levy,” the superintendent said.

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