March 7, 2011
LEAGUE PRESIDENT TO ADDRESS BUDGET COMMITTEE
The League of Municipalities’ President, Mayor Chuck Chiarello of Buena Vista Township, will speak on the Governor’s Budget proposal tomorrow in Trenton. Mayor Chiarello will address the Assembly Budget Committee, as it begins its 2011 deliberations on the State’s next spending plan.
Focusing on the impact of State actions on local property taxes, the municipal leader notes, “No one runs for local office with plans to increase taxes and reduce public services. But circumstances beyond their control have forced Mayors and governing bodies in municipalities all around the State to cut all local services and to reduce the numbers of public safety, and all other, personnel.
“Faced with a sluggish economy, high unemployment, declining property values, rapidly rising pension, benefit and utility costs, an incomplete toolkit, an arbitrary and artificial 2% levy cap and three straight years of State raids on local property tax relief revenues, the task at hand for mayors and municipal governing bodies is crafting a 2011 budget that meets all the needs of our citizens, and creates a climate for economic recovery. That will demand consummate skill and considerable creativity. Both the level of property taxation and the quality of local services directly affect the economic vitality of our State. And State policy makers can help by recognizing the problems we all face.”
Noting especially the costs of tax appeals, the state mandated reserve for uncollected taxes, and rapidly rising pension and benefit costs, Mayor Chiarello will tell the legislators, “Giving municipal property taxpayers all the relief they have coming to them needs to be a part of the new normal.”
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For further information contact: William G. Dressel, Jr., Executive Director at (609)695-3481, extension 122 or 609-915-9072.