RANDOLPH,NJ- Council signed off on a first quarter budget for 2014 and voted on beginning-of-the-year resolutions at Randolph’s first town council meeting since Mayor Jim Loveys’ appointment.  Randolph Police Department also held a swearing-in ceremony that saw two new officers brought on board last Tuesday, Jan. 14.

In the town’s latest financial reports, the years sampled (2009-2012), saw population tick up about 4.3%.  Operating revenue held fast, declining about 1.3% over that time, but Randolph’s robust financial position bears out in a sampling of AAA bond-rated municipalities, available through the RandolphNJ.com web site. 

Per capita tax revenue last year was significantly lower here than in Princeton Township, Ridgewood, and Summit, towns against which Randolph is compared in the report.  Local government’s debt per capita was about 1/5 of the median average among the AAA towns.  Council also passed a motion to double Randolph’s municipal liability insurance to $10m, increasing the annual cost of insurance for the town by just under $5,000.

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The first-quarter budget, passed in anticipation of the more significant annual budget discussions starting at the next meeting, Feb. 6, sets out employee wages and expenses, in some cases, for the coming year. 

Mayor Loveys issued a proclamation in anticipation of a new Wellness Day, to be held May 3rd at Randolph Middle School.  "The event is going to focus on core concepts of wellness – general health, safety, environmental and financial wellness,” according to Dr. David Simon, a partner in the Randolph Pain Relief and Wellness Center. Dentists, doctors, environmentalists and other professionals are signed up to take part in the event, which is also co-sponsored by the Randolph Rotary Club and the health department.  “Randolph Township supports the efforts of those in the community looking to inspire our residents,” Loveys said.

At an induction held before the meeting last Tuesday, Michael Puskas and James Pritchard became Randolph’s newest police officers.  Ofc. Puskas earned a B.A. in Criminal Justice and was an honor society member at Montclair University, and Ofc. Pritchard , a former NASCAR driver and race team manager , studied Applied Science and Criminal Justice at CCM.  Both are Morris County Public Safety Academy graduates and have prior experience on EMS rescue squads.

Town Manager John Lovell said  “This is a very fine organization they’re joining.  They’ll hopefully have long careers here, and we’re excited to have them on board.  I’m very proud of the police department here in Randolph.”