SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – South Plainfield residents can expect no increase in the municipal portion of their tax bill after the Borough Council introduced a $29,765,468 spending plan Monday evening.
“This is just the budget introduction, but I am pleased taxes are flat,” said South Plainfield Mayor Anesh. “The March snow storms have put financial pressures on municipalities throughout the State, and I am pleased Council President Robert Bengivenga and the Finance Committee were able to start with a budget whose tax rate is flat.”
According to Council President Bengivenga the average home in 2018 will pay $1,667.74 in municipal taxes versus $1,669.62 in 2017. Municipal taxes account for approximately 23% of the total property tax bill.
“As I said last year, I’m the Borough’s toughest critic on the budget,” said Council President Bengivenga. “Each year we strive to be the best in operations, but also recognize the need to be affordable to our residents. S&P has recently recognized the Borough’s strong financial management and economy and this is why we are able to handle unexpected items such as multiple March snow storms without just defaulting to raising taxes.”
The municipal budget passed along party lines with all four republican councilman voting yes and democratic Councilman Gary Vesce being the lone no vote stating he wanted more time to review. Councilman Jon Dean was not in attendance.
According to Anesh, the work done by Councilman Derryck White’s Economic Development Committee has been critical to the Borough’s financial results. The Borough’s ratable base has increased $19,000,000 in the past two years.
“This is a team effort,” said Councilman Joseph Wolak. “The elected officials get the credit, but it is really the hard-work of the Borough employees. It goes right from our Administrator and Police Chief all the way down to summer help in Public Works.”
“Each year we operate on just what the Borough needs,” said Anesh. “Taxes are over $1,800,000 below what the State would approve. Smaller and affordable government is how the Borough prides itself in operating year-in and year-out and we’re working hard to keep it that way.”