Monroe scheduled to introduce township budget tonight

Christopher Lang, Correspondent, @topherlang2 | Apr 9, 2018 | MonroeNow

The Monroe Township Council is scheduled to introduce the 2018 municipal budget during the regular meeting tonight.

According to sources within the local government, property taxes would increase approximately $60 on the average assessed home, though that could change if the spending plan is modified.

The budget, would also honor a previous agreement with the Monroe Township School District to pay for armed, off-duty police officers to provide security at the public schools until the district develops and approves a long-term plan for its in-house team to handle those operations, said Township Business Administrator Alan Weinberg.

The introduction of the budget is the first step before final adoption. While the public can attend tonight’s meeting, it is not the official hearing on the 2018 spending plan. Other budget details are not known at this time. But following its introduction, community members can view or request a copy through the clerk’s office or review it online once posted.

The Township is also slated to receive $2.26 million is state aid — the same amount in 2017 — assuming Governor Murphy’s proposed state budget is adopted without any changes to municipalities.

Aside from the budget introduction, the council is also scheduled to have a final vote to establish “The Mayor’s N.J. Training School Open Space Preservation Task Force.”

Proposed by Mayor Gerald Tamburro in February, the goal is to bring together public officials and private citizens to determine the best way to keep the property as open space, after former Gov. Chris Christie announced in early January that New Jersey would use a $162 million bond to finance closing the Civil War-era juvenile detention center would close.

Along with a similar facility for girls that is slated to close in Bordentown, the detention centers would be replaced with two rehabilitation campuses to be built in Ewing and Winslow Township.

“I must ensure that the disposition of the entire property must be accomplished thoughtfully and include the input of all stakeholders,” Tamburro wrote in a Feb. 9 letter to Governor Murphy about the pending task force. “As the host for 151 years, we are the largest stakeholder and the township strongly desires the property remain as preserved farmland and open space.”

Aside from regular business, at the start of the meeting the council will recognize the Monroe High School girls bowling team’s Central Jersey Group IV title and the national champion cheer team.

The Township Council meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the municipal building.