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December 2, 2010

Re:       I.  DCA Releases the Best Practices Results
            II. COAH and Management Reform Updates

Dear Mayor:

I.  DCA Releases the Best Practices Results

Late this afternoon, the Division of Local Government Services posted the results of the Best Practices checklist.  According to their release, the majority of towns fared well on the 88-question survey of Best Practices guidelines.  The Best Practices Checklist responses were submitted by 535 of the 536 eligible municipalities that operate on a calendar year budget.  Municipalities operating on a fiscal year budget must submit their Best Practices Checklist by April 1, 2011

Of the 535 calendar year municipalities that submitted completed checklists this year, 374 will not have any loss in state aid. The total aid loss of the other 161 municipalities was $99,534. The reduction of aid will be on the final state aid payment. 

We met with Commissioner Grifa and her staff to discuss your concerns, which were raised regarding the initial release of the checklist.  The Department incorporated most of suggestions we made to the checklist.  As a result of the changes made to the checklist, more municipalities were able to receive their full final payment of State aid than what they would have if the changes were not made.  

To view a score sheet of each calendar year municipality and its Best Practices Checklist result, go to on the division’s website.

We will continue to work with the Department on this endeavor to ensure that municipalities are fairly evaluated on the work that they are doing to ensure the public trust.

If you have any questions or need additional guidance please contact Lori Buckelew at or 609-695-3481 x112.

II. COAH and Management Reform Updates

As we approach the end of this eventful year, the Legislature continues to debate Affordable Housing and Municipal Management reforms. It is essential for agreements to be reached on these matters.

For your information, we have prepared a memo to make the latest and most complete information on these matters available to you. You can access the memo at:

Please contact your State Senator and your representatives in the General Assembly on the importance of not leaving Trenton, for the Holiday recess, prior to making definitive progress on these vital issues.

If you have any questions contact Jon Moran at 609-695-3481, ext. 121 or  

Very truly yours,


William G. Dressel, Jr.
Executive Director

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