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Eatontown council delays adoption of 2021 municipal budget

EATONTOWN – Citing an incomplete review by the state, borough officials in Eatontown have moved the adoption of the 2021 municipal budget to a later meeting.

The budget was introduced on April 14 and a public hearing on the annual spending plan took place during the Borough Council’s May 12 meeting.

The council’s proposed $28.66 million budget will be supported by the collection of $19.7 million in taxes from Eatontown’s residential and commercial property owners.

During the meeting, Borough Auditor Bob Oliwa said the budget was not ready to be adopted. He informed the council members the New Jersey Division of Local Government Services had not finished reviewing the introduced budget and he said a complete review by the division was required for its adoption.

Oliwa said the division’s review may be completed by the council’s next meeting, which is scheduled for May 26, but a specific date for the budget’s adoption was not known at the time.

Once state officials have finished reviewing the budget, it is expected to return before the Borough Council for possible adoption.

In addition to the local tax levy, other revenue in the 2021 budget includes the receipt of $1.46 million in state aid and the appropriation of $4.5 million from the borough’s surplus fund (savings).

Selected appropriations in the 2021 budget include the following: Legal Services and Costs, Other Expenses, $270,000; Group Insurance, $3.39 million; Workers Compensation, $454,000; Other Insurance, $443,540; Police, Salaries and Wages, $6.56 million; Police, Other Expenses, $329,450; Road Repair and Maintenance, Salaries and Wages, $1.98 million; Road Repair and Maintenance, Other Expenses, $1.11 million; payment to Police and Firemen’s Retirement System of New Jersey, $1.51 million; payment to Public Employees’ Retirement System, $515,000; payment to Social Security System, $464,000; Capital Improvement Fund, $445,323; Payment of Bond Principal, $1.87 million; and Interest on Bonds, $640,000.

In 2020, Eatontown’s municipal tax rate was 80.3 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The owner of a home that was assessed at $325,000 paid about $2,610 in municipal taxes (0.803 x $3,250).

In 2021, Eatontown’s municipal tax rate is projected to be 82.9 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The owner of a home that is still assessed at $325,000 will pay about $2,694 in municipal taxes (0.829 x $3,250).

Municipal taxes are one item on a property owner’s tax bill, which also includes Eatontown K-8 School District taxes, Monmouth Regional High School District taxes and Monmouth County taxes.

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

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