FAIRFIELD, NJ — The taxes on an average Fairfield Township house, valued at $445,908, will decrease by $17 if the proposed municipal budget is adopted, Fairfield Mayor James Gasparini announced at Monday night’s mayor and council meeting.

The public hearing and final adoption of the municipal budget will be on Monday, July 17. The budget is considerably below the 2-percent cap, according to council.

The mayor said that the township was able to hire three new police officers, support the recreation building, handle the 2-percent township salary increases and still keep the municipal budget below cap. Under the 2-percent cap law, the township could have kept $350,000 in the budget, but because of prudent decisions and actions, the budget remained below the cap.

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Gasparini thanked Chief Financial Officer (CFO) John McCluskey, Business Administrator Joseph Catenaro, the council and all employees for their fine job of keeping the budget on track and keeping Fairfield “more of a jewel than it already was.” He said it is not an easy job.

“We have a great group of people who serve our community,” said Gasparini, who added that “government is service,” and said that even with police department renovations costing more than $1 million, the township “has kept taxes under control.”

Catenaro thanked Gasparini and said that the budget is a plan and unforeseen expenses can arise, but the mayor closely monitors what is needed and not needed and makes sure that expenses match what has been budgeted.

“Nothing happens by accident,” said Council President Michael McGlynn.

As the nation moved through the worst of financial times, “Jim exhibited leadership, and everyone benefited,” McGlynn said.