For Immediate Release – April 20, 2020
MIDDLETOWN, NJ – The Middletown Township Committee introduced its $80.3 million dollar budget with a zero percent municipal tax rate increase at tonight’s Township Committee meeting. The proposed 2020 municipal budget represents an ongoing commitment to minimizing costs while maximizing revenue and services.
“Despite the global pandemic and declining revenues, the Township Committee has once again delivered a fiscally responsible budget without reducing services, continuing to invest in our parks and recreational facilities and spearheading initiatives that protect Middletown’s most vulnerable residents,” said Mayor Tony Perry. “This budget represents the fiscal solvency and stability to withstand this crisis and lost revenues, however it hinges on Middletown and the State of New Jersey getting back on its feet.”
Key drivers to the budget this year include planning for increased costs in response to a new law protecting firefighters and other first responders and operational storm response savings.
In an effort for residents to gain a greater understanding of where their tax dollars are being spent, the Township will be updating the “Tax Dollar Receipt” calculator on the website: www.middletownnj.org/mytaxdollars.
Key Budget Facts:
- The Township continues to realize savings through a variety of revenue-enhancing shared service agreements with other municipalities (including Fair Haven, Hazlet, Highlands and Holmdel), the Middletown Board of Education, and Monmouth County. This month, the Township entered into a shared service with the County for Community Development Block Grant management that will enable the Township to continue its very successful housing rehabilitation program and reduced costs;
- Healthy reserves have permitted the Township to reduce the budget lines for Storm Response by $325,000 and Reserve for Tax Appeals by $50,000;
- Workers Compensation increased $500,000 due to an increase in claims in 2019 and planning for increased costs due to a new law protecting firefighters and other first responders;
- Retirement costs reduced by approximately $50,000 – this can be partially attributed to the increased use of part time employees where appropriate;
- Increase in medical and prescription appropriation by $250,000 due to claims history;
- Contractual Police salary increases of approximately $400,000;
- Through purchasing more fuel-efficient vehicles and a favorable commodities market, the Township has saved about $100,000 in fuel costs;
- The 2020 proposed municipal budget is well below the state-mandated levy cap ($948,000) and remains in full conformance with the state appropriation and levy cap laws;
- The Township budget makes up approximately 23% of the average property tax bill. The remaining portion primarily relates to the school (62%) and County tax levies (12%);
- On average, Middletown Township’s annual tax levy increases have been minimal and among the lowest in Monmouth County over the last decade.
Visit www.middletownnj.org/budget2020 for more information.