NORTH CALDWELL, NJ – A 2018 budget for municipal purposes totaling $6,305,152 in appropriations was adopted on Tuesday by the North Caldwell Borough council. The average North Caldwell homeowner will see a tax increase of $37.53, the same number as 2017, to the average home, assessed at approximately $670,850, according to the council’s budget presentation.

Councilman Arthur Rees said that the municipal tax rate has not increased in four of the last six years.

Tuesday’s meeting also saw the adoption of a bond ordinance to authorize various municipal improvements.

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The council also introduced an ordinance prohibiting the smoking of tobacco, any tobacco-derived products or the use of smoking or vaporizing devices in public.

“This is something that we are seeing a lot of other municipalities approving,” Mayor Joseph Alessi said.

The public hearing and final reading on this ordinance will be held on May 22.

The council also approved a resolution to authorize lease financing for the acquisition of two police department patrol vehicles.

“This is much needed,” said Chief of Police Mark Deuer.

In other news, Alessi noted that North Caldwell received an A+ as far as municipalities go.

“What makes this town great is what happened this weekend with [baseball and softball] opening day for the kids,” he said. “We had a parade for them and the kids loved it.”

He also said that the dog park, which is scheduled for a groundbreaking ceremony with the county at 10 a.m. on Friday, should be ready for use by August.

“Essex County has commenced construction of the dog park on Hilltop property near Mountain Avenue,” said Alessi. “We are also talking about making a walking path in back of Liberty.”

The next township council meeting will be held on May 8 at 7:30 p.m.