Red Bank council sets June 19 for public hearing on $22.96 million budget

The Red Bank Borough Council has introduced a $22.96 million budget to fund the operation of the municipality in 2019.

During a Red Bank Borough Council meeting on May 22, council President Erik Yngstrom, Councilwoman Kathy Horgan, Councilwoman Kate Triggiano, Councilman Michael Ballard, Councilman Hazim Yassin and Councilman Ed Zipprich voted “yes” without comment on a motion to introduce the spending plan.

The budget is expected to be discussed by the members of the governing body at their June 5 workshop meeting.

The public hearing on the budget will take place on June 19. The council members may adopt the budget following the public hearing.

In 2018, the budget was $22.57 million and the tax levy paid by the borough’s residential and commercial property owners was $13.31 million.

In 2019, the $22.96 million budget will be supported in part through the collection of $14.21 million in taxes from Red Bank’s property owners.

The total budget has increased by $390,000 and the tax levy has increased by $900,000 from 2018 to 2019.

According to a statement on the municipality’s website, “The budget reflects a fiscally responsible approach to governance that incorporates forward thinking planning and a long-term strategy as opposed to a year-to-year plan of action.

“Appropriations increased by less than $400,000. This change is largely attributed to contractual increases, additional payments to reduce our debt obligations and restoring the borough reserves for emergencies.

“Anticipated revenue for the year was reduced by approximately $500,000 to wean the borough off its dependence on surplus funds. Thanks to a thriving local economy that is fostering investment, construction and redevelopment, our ‘ratables’ are very healthy, allowing the borough to enjoy a nominal increase in the municipal tax rate for 2019,” the statement reads.

Significant appropriations in the 2019 budget include employee group insurance, $2.45 million; police department, salaries and wages, $5.4 million; street and road maintenance, salaries and wages, $1.32 million; landfill/solid waste disposal costs, $519,000; street lighting, $260,000; and fire department, other expenses, $143,200.

In 2018, Red Bank’s municipal tax rate was 58.9 cents per $100 of assessed valuation, according to a 2018 budget presentation that is posted on the borough’s website. The owner of a home assessed at $366,231 would have paid about $2,157 in municipal taxes.

Borough officials said the 2019 municipal tax rate would not become available until July, but they said the owner of a home assessed at $366,231 would pay about $51 more in municipal taxes in 2019 than in 2018.

Municipal taxes are one item on a property owner’s tax bill. Red Bank property owners also pay local school taxes, regional school taxes and Monmouth County taxes.

The amount an individual pays in property taxes is determined by the assessed value of his home and/or property, and the tax rate that is set by each taxing entity.