MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ - Each week leading to the November 6 election, the candidates running for Mountainside Borough Council have the opportunity to answer question(s) that will be run in a series by TAPinto Mountainside.

The following answer is from Republican Candidate for Borough Council Robert Messler for Week 2.

Question: Residents are concerned about rising taxes in Mountainside. The tax bill is made up of numbers from the County, School and Borough. The Borough's portion of the tax bill is the smallest. Many costs are out of the council's control with the rising cost of services and employee benefits. However, tax payers want to know how you will control the budget while maintaining and improving infrastructure issues and services and preparing for the future. Please explain your plan.

In my time on Borough Council, I can tell you that we’ve collectively spent thousands of hours making absolutely sure that Mountainside residents are getting the best value for their Municipal tax dollars. That’s what we MUST do in Mountainside, because of the affordability crisis we face in New Jersey.  We know that Trenton is piling on more and more taxes, so maintaining fiscal responsibility locally is paramount. Thankfully, that’s what we’ve been able to do here on council. We leave no stone unturned when it comes to obtaining grant dollars, sharing services, and working with our utility providers to cover paving costs. That’s why this year our municipal tax increase is less than one percent of your total tax bill. I live here too, what happens to my tax bill is what happens to your tax bill, and while I’m on Council, I will continue to fight to keep taxes low and Mountainside affordable for all of us.