Twp. Committee Passes Budget with Lower Taxes
The budget is now up for public hearing and final adoption March 28.
The Chatham Township committee unanimously passed their 2013 budget on first reading Thursday evening.
The budget calls for a reduced local tax levy from 2012 levels of 3/10 of a cent. For the average home assessed at $750,000, this would mean a tax decrease of $25.50.
The 2012 tax rate was at 28.8 cents per $100 of assessed value, for a total average municipal tax of $2,152. If the committee votes to approve the budget as proposed, that amount will fall to 28.5 cents per $100.
Administrator Thomas E. Ciccarone said Thursday, "as hard as it may be to believe, I actually made a mistake" in calculating the levy cap calculation.
The error happened due to a $144,000 emergency appropriation from 2011 storms which was applied to the 2012 budget. "In doing the levy cap ... calculation, there's a [deduction] from the cap base of that amount," Ciccarone said. "The net effect of that is that the maximum allowable amount for the tax levy is $8,952,805."
The amount to be raised by taxes—$8,574,639—did not change.
Ciccarone previously said the maximum allowable amount which could be raised by taxes in 2013 was $9,071,185. The corrected amount is $118,380 less than that, lessening the township's allowable bank cap for this year to $378,166.
On March 28 the committee will hold a public hearing on the budget and a final reading. If it is approved, the budget will go into effect for this year.
In 2011 and 2012, the township kept local taxes flat, thanks in a large part to the same things that have allowed them to lower the tax levy in 2013: shared services, ratables within the township and consolidating positions.