The five point increase in the municipal tax rate is a result of two factors, the 1.1 million dollar increase in salaries and the $229,000 increase in health benefit premiums. A home assessed at $200,000 will pay $100 more in 2000 for municipal purposes.
Police and fire salary increases account for 70% of total increase in salaries and wages. Authorized strength remains the same in the year 2000. Additional part time employees in the Recreation Department are being hired to expand a number of junior and senior programs, at an added budget cost of $32,000. Expanded junior programs include basketball clinics, cooking, wrestling, dance and pre-school gym. Expanded senior programs include chair exercise, aerobics, osteoporosis exercise, Tai Chi, toning and water exercise. A new men's only exercise program has been added to the many recreation programs available for residents of all ages.
Other expenses are up $157,250 or about 1-1/2%. The significant items of increase are $229,000 for health insurance, $50,000 for legal expenses, $25,000 for the Master Plan revision and $31,200 for utility costs. These increases are offset in part by the $200,000 decrease in the Bergen County Utilities Authority fee.
There was surprisingly, this year, only a modest increase in Statutory Expenditures of $20,970. An increase in Social Security contributions of $34,077 was offset by a decrease in the annual contribution to the Police and Firemen Retirement System. This reduction resulted from a new State law which eliminated the accrued liability portion of the annual contribution bill.
Capital Improvements planned for 2000 are shown in Schedule D. In our continuing effort to recover from the devastating winters of 1994 and 1996, another $400,000 has been provided for road resurfacing. A sidewalk assessment program has been funded for the southeast section of Teaneck. Funding has been provided for architectural studies for needed improvements to Fire Headquarters, the old Police Building and the Municipal Building. A joint project has been worked out with the Teaneck Junior Soccer League and the Teaneck Baseball Organization for installation of lighting in the "new" field in Votee Park.
The budget also provides for replacement of a 1982 fire engine and installation of a long awaited fire ground frequency. Other projects include purchase of equipment for the Police, Fire, Public Works and Recreation Departments. Amman Park is next in line for our continuing upgrade of tennis courts and playground equipment. The scope of the Cedar Lane Special Improvement District improvement is still under review. Any excess funding provided will be applied towards the public building improvements now under architectural review.
The four million dollar loan for the Richard Rodda Community Building Expansion was reduced to $3,897,000 and refinanced at an interest rate of 4.39%. This was 46 basis points higher than the previous rate of 3.93%.
Construction of the new Public Works Building has been delayed because of the required cleanup of the soil due to lead contamination from the police pistol range formerly located on the north end of the site. We expect to go to bid in the Fall of 2000 with construction to begin in 2001.
Please do not hesitate to call me or stop to see me at the Municipal Building if you need further explanation regarding the 2000 Municipal Budget.
Gary A. Saage
Budget and Tax Analysis
Municipal Budget Breakdown
Schedule A, B, C, D, and E
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