HOLMDEL, NJ - It's budget time in Holmdel.
Due to the pandemic, the State of New Jersey moved the deadlines for town budgets to May. The Holmdel Township Committee is now set to consider the introduction of the 2020 Holmdel Township Budget.
Each year every municipality starts off with a temporary budget which is composed of a little over a quarter of the prior year's appropriations. If the budget is not approved in a typical timeframe, the temporary budget is amended as the year progresses. While it's best to have the budget adopted as early as practicable, the pandemic made this difficult.
The meeting agenda for Tuesday, May 26th includes a presentation listing the key drivers of the budget from a revenue and appropriations perspective as follows:
The proposal uses $3.5 million in surplus, using 80.94% this year as opposed to 99.41% of surplus used in 2019. The proposal reduces projected revenue from Uniform Fire Safety Inspections from $25,000 to $16,000 due to reduced inspections as a result of COVID-19.
Stay home orders don't just affect everyday people. They affect criminals as well - they stayed home too. The vehicle traffic in Holmdel, and especially on the Garden State Parkway has plummeted. Since the pandemic, municipal data shows a decrease of about 45% in activity with many area police departments. It's now being reflected in the budget.
In Holmdel, anticipated court fees are reduced from $525,000 in 2019 to $250,000 as a result of COVID-19.
Bell Works has been closed during the pandemic and this has impacted the budget as well. Holmdel reduced the anticipated PILOT revenue by approximately 35% of the realized amount in 2019 due to anticipated rent reductions at Bell Works as a result of COVID-19.
Liability and Casualty insurance premiums were reduced from $772,133 to $652,525, a 15.5% decrease from 2019. The portion that was previously charge to the Swim Pool Utility has been moved into the Current Fund budget in the event that the pool does not open this season.
Holmdel has a long history of providing a community swim club. It is not clear, however, if it opens in 2020. The appropriations for the Swim Pool Utility are based upon the opening of the pool. If the pool does not open due to COVID-19, these appropriations are anticipated to be canceled.
You can view all the information about each respective municipal department by reading the proposed budget HERE.