Millstone committee sets May 1 for public hearing on $6.4M budget

MILLSTONE – The Township Committee has introduced a $6.41 million budget to fund the operation of Millstone Township this year.

The 2019 municipal budget was introduced by committee members on April 3. A public hearing on the budget will be held at 8 p.m. on May 1 at the municipal building. The committee may adopt the budget that evening.

The $6.41 million budget, which may be amended prior to its final adoption, will be supported by the collection of $3.13 million in taxes from Millstone Township’s residential and commercial property owners.

Other revenue in 2019 will include $841,753 in state aid and the use of $600,000 from surplus funds (savings). Officials project the township will earn $410,000 from interest on investments and deposits and will apply that as revenue.

Millstone Township’s 2018 budget totaled $6.34 million and was supported by the collection of $2.59 million in taxes from property owners. Other revenue included $841,753 in state aid and $1.15 million from surplus funds.

In 2018, officials projected the township would earn $315,000 from interest on investments and deposits, but realized $371,267.

The 2019 budget is up $70,000 from 2018 and the 2019 tax levy is up $540,000 from 2018.

The municipal tax rate in 2018 was 13.9 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The owner of a home assessed at the township average of $534,657 paid about $743 in municipal taxes.

Upon introducing the 2019 budget, committee members said they were not prepared to release this year’s municipal tax rate.

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

An individual pays more or less in taxes based on the assessed value of his home and/or property, and the tax rate that is set by each taxing entity.

“This has been a challenging year,” Mayor Fiore Masci said. “We have focused on security measures and equipment infrastructure, as well as road improvements. Our town has a responsible fiscal budget that will serve us now and in the future.”

Selected appropriations in the 2019 municipal budget include group health insurance for employees and retirees, $660,000; legal services, $125,000; general liability insurance, $146,300; contribution to the Public Employees Retirement System, $167,615; contribution to first aid squad, $70,000; and two line items under Road Repairs and Maintenance, $457,014 for salaries and wages, and $116,290 for other expenses.