Rahway holds meeting to discuss budget

RAHWAY, NJ — On Tuesday, June 21, a special meeting was held in Rahway to discuss the municipal budget. Prior to the meeting, an ordinance was passed to exceed the municipal budget appropriation limits and establish a cap bank. There were public hearings that included a resolution to adopt the city budget as well as a resolution to adopt the city of Rahway 2016 Special Improvement District.

“The city works diligently to try to develop a budget that is fiscally responsible and efficient in services,” Rahway Business Administrator Cherron Rountree told LocalSource. “The tax levy for 2016 increased $631,350 compared to the 2015 Levy, or only 1.7 percent — under the state’s two percent cap.

“This year the municipal portion of the tax bill will increase very slightly, having the effect on the average homeowner of under $10 per quarter. We have accomplished this by trying to maintain efficiencies, developing partnerships with other communities to reach economies of scale and practicing fiscal responsibility. For instance, our departmental salaries and wages increased only a fraction of a percent. Additionally, our redevelopment projects have brought in significant revenue to the city in addition to contributing to the economic revival of Rahway,” Rountree said.

The reserve for uncollected taxes, debt service and deferred charges and other appropriations also increased at just a fraction of a percent. The capital improvements showed a slight decrease in the past year. The local tax for municipal purposes showed a minor increase as well as the total general revenue. When contacted by LocalSource about the recent budget meeting and ordinances passed, Mayor Samson Steinman was unavailable for comment.

An ordinance was passed to exceed the municipal budget appropriation limits and establish a cap bank. It was found that a 3.5 percent increase in the budget, amounting to $1,444,318 in excess of the increase in final appropriations otherwise permitted, was advisable and necessary. A resolution introducing the city of Rahway 2016 Special Improvements District, also known as the Arts District, was announced. The budget set forth was authorized for an amount of $760,000 for Special Improvement District purposes. The proposed budget included $140,000 for the total income and the total amount in expenses.

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