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Average Municipal Tax Bill To Increase $99

Town council approves $77.9 million budget, up from $76.5 million last year, 5-2. Average home is valued at $229,000.

The municipal portion of the average homeowner’s tax bill will increase $99 this year.

The council approved the township’s 2012 $77.9 million municipal budget Wednesday, , a 2 percent increase.

The budget includes a $58.9 million tax levy, the portion of the budget funded by local taxes, up from $56.7 million in 2011. The average home in Wayne is valued at $229,000.

The council voted five to two to approve the budget. Councilmen Al Sadowski and Joseph Scuralli voted the budget down. Councilwoman Lonni Miller Ryan and Councilman Joseph Schweighardt were absent.

“I’ve never voted for a tax increase because I don’t believe the tax burden can be expanded any further than it already has been,” Scuralli said. “I believe people are at their limit and I don’t believe they can afford to pay more.”

The average homeowner’s taxes would have gone up an average of $112 if the budget that was introduced in March was approved, but changes were made to reduce the increase.

In order for taxes to remain flat year over year, the council would’ve had to cut $2.3 million out of the budget, which would have severely curtailed the services the town would offer, officials said. The township lost $35 million in tax ratables from this year to last year.

“We’re doing the best we can in the current economic conditions,” Mayor Chris Vergano said.

The $99 increase means the average homeowner's taxes have increased about $226 form last year. 

The school portion of the average homeowner’s taxes increased $127 after the   earlier this year.

The average municipal tax bill increased $89 in 2011.

Salaries and wages dropped slightly from $28.8 million last year to $28.5 million this year.

The number of full-time employees decreased slightly from 362 to 366.

The number of part-time employees remained level at 93.

Have a question or news tip? Contact editor Daniel Hubbard at Daniel.Hubbard@patch.com or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

eyes wide shut June 21, 2012 at 08:29 PM
Now tell me, how many people in town hall are making less than 25k? What % do you figure are making less than that? Everyone in Joe Albanses's office make much more than that. Same in Joe Tangora's
Jorgey June 21, 2012 at 08:34 PM
FYI... website: www.app.com (asbury park press) @ the top: "Data Universe" you can find any public employee info (salary, etc)
Patricia Rivera June 21, 2012 at 08:47 PM
Wow, sounds like quite a few of you are upset with yet another tax increase! So I urge you to get involved. Write to the Town Council, attend meetings.
Patricia Rivera June 21, 2012 at 08:52 PM
The budget was completed in March 2012 and submitted to the Town Council for review, recommendations and approval. It usually is approved at the end or close to the end of the school year. So Scott Rumana did not intentionally delay, not his doing or the Republican Party. I am a Republican, actually a Conservative and I have been expressing my dissatisfaction with the High Property Taxes in Wayne. I actually have the budget and am going to try and understand it before March 2013 so that I can be more educated and vocal. I urge ALL my Wayne neighbors to get more involved.
Nose Wayne June 21, 2012 at 08:59 PM
Eyes The reason some of the people are making over 25K is that they have been there for over 25,30 years. Oh, so everybody NOSE, NOSE RAISES FOR THE REGULAR EMPLOYEES !! So don't blame them for the RAISE in your taxes.
Jorgey June 21, 2012 at 09:13 PM
Thanks & no, "Nose" we won't blame any1 for their salary, thou in private sector hiring I presented an entire "pkg deal" health insurance (espec if it's good, and/or if you don't have 2-pay in2), X-amt of sick/vacation days, pen$ion, etc. So IDK, only have heard about these "great" job opp's in any govn'mnt job. I'm learning alot on this site alone. Just for the record, I've delt w/the Town Bldg dept(Zone, Planning, Engineer) the last 4 yrs & found them to be courteous, helpful. & always busy.
Jorgey June 21, 2012 at 09:31 PM
As for getting involved, this Saturday at 1:00 the Mayor (along w/others I believe the police chief? etc) will meet the public to discuss the recent burglaries. I believe @ the library? IDK. Try selling a house in Wayne these days.. when the burglaries made 1010 news! Add that to Wayne being associated with "floods" ... being a Realtor, not easy. We're not upset just beCAUSE of "a" tax increase or paying police $150K? it's the TIMING; not just the economy, especially bcause it's not safe to live in Wayne apparently! I wouldn't hesitate to shoot an intruder, what worries me is how I'd live w/myself for killing another human being.. regardless. It would change my entire life. Just maybe they could've waited on increases until we have jobs & raises too or at least till this wave of crime ends.
Wayne's World June 21, 2012 at 10:02 PM
Here's a question for people in the know/Nose. I recently paid over $1,000 in building permits for improvements I want to make to my house. I literally had sticker-shock. I figured a permit would be like $25-100 or so. Between building, electrical and plumbing inspection, the bill is outrageous. It seems to me that the money is going toward paying for the inspectors' time...my question is: 1) Is that actually the case; and 2) If so, doesn't the town hire these guys as employees/contractors and isn't their salary part of the municipal budget? If it is, are the permit fees nothing more than a shameless money-grab? No wonder many homeowners choose to forego permits and the resulting tax increase on their property. My contractor believes that dealing with towns is like dealing with the mafia.
Justice June 21, 2012 at 10:08 PM
I still say get rid of the overlapping jobs at 475. That is what the private sector does and I don't mean the $8.00 an hour clerical jobs either. http://www.nj.com/news/bythenumbers/
Pad June 21, 2012 at 10:27 PM
Many people are winning tax appeals in Wayne. Many are being unfairly assessed and the Township is losing 35 million in taxes this year. Next year will be more. They need to freeze hiring in this Township. They are always hiring and creating positions especially at the top. All hiring should be frozen. Imagine if we had a paid FD and EMS? Thank God for the volunteers. The PD is always hiring and many are out collecting disability pensions at a very young age. Yet they work on the outside in other jobs. Maybe they could work inside in other assignments not on street duty. It doesn't take much to get a state disability pension. On the outside they would be saying "Back to work". These cost need to be controlled and only officers who are truely disabled should be collecting a disability pension. We have a fantastic Police Department and some really fantastic officers but much can be done to control cost in all departments. There should also be an effort to increase productivity of town workers. I see many Township vehicles in parking lots killing time till the end of the day. Maybe a vehicle tracking GPS system would help out with this issue.
Support Change June 21, 2012 at 10:38 PM
More TAX-AND-SPEND Government. Please consider voting for the CONSERVATIVE REPUBLICANS for Council and Mayor Next year. Get rid of the taxers & vote for WAYNE REPUBLICAN PARTY FOR THE PEOPLE. WHO YOU VOTE FOR REALLY MAKES A DIFFERENCE.
Nose Wayne June 22, 2012 at 04:47 AM
Pad , Just think if we did have a Paid Fire And First Aid Squad ? At least they are saving us alot of taxpayer money. More than I can say about the Township. Speaking about the Township, did anybody hear about The BOE just COMPLETELY REMODELED the Administration Building that includes a COMPLETELY SOUNDPROOF ROOM the board can use for their secret meetings. Spent thousands of dollars on SOUNDPROOF glass and walls in the area of the supers office. Can't make this stuff up !!!!!
Nose Wayne June 22, 2012 at 04:53 AM
Everytime the district hired a new super, the Administration Building has been remodeled. Can anybody count how many supers we have had in the last couple of years ? Has your house been remodeled that many times ? Mine hasn't !!!
Pad June 22, 2012 at 08:07 AM
This is another waste of taxpayers money by the BOE. Yes, the Super before Sico spent alot of money on remodeling her office and other areas. Soundproof room? What are they the CIA? What BS this is. This Super and the BOE Board members has to go. They are on a spending and hiring thier friends spree and it needs to stop. November will be here real soon so some maybe packing thier bags.
Nose Wayne June 22, 2012 at 11:46 AM
Pad,They should all pack their bags. They will do in the soundproof room so NOSEbody hears them packing !!
Marvic June 22, 2012 at 12:45 PM
We need to stop comparing the private sector with the public sector. To state the obvious, they serve different constituents. If you layoff in the public sector, you'll see things get worse. Maybe your taxes won't go up, but that means less $$ going to local businesses. Sure, benefits are generous but salary increases of 3% is not out of the park when you look at the cost of living, especially in NJ. The budget should always be re-evaluated for savings here or there and getting more ratables, etc, but consistently slamming government employees makes no sense if you are concerned about the local economy, home values, etc. The private sector is not investing or spending, so that should mean the opposite - the public sector in theory should be spending more! The analogy of private sector tightening and public sector tightening, or one family's budget tightening should translate into the public sector tightening its belt, is not the way to get our town on the up. One person's income is another's spending, and one person's spending is another's income. This is how it works on a national, state, and local level. Look at our stats NJ - higher unemployment than the national average, the economy is getting no better. Is the solution really to cut jobs and salaries?
ETS June 22, 2012 at 01:09 PM
Things get worse when you lay people off in the public sector? Why? I've been through countless layoffs in the private sector and things didn't get worse - services weren't cut to any clients or customers. The public sector has a penchant for building up administration and not knowing how to get rid of this in bad economic times.
Wayne's World June 22, 2012 at 01:16 PM
That's a nice, simplistic piece of economic theory but it's untenable. First of all, very few of our public sector workers live in Wayne. I don't know what the percentage is but I have met several teachers and municipal workers who do not live in town. So their wages are not being spent here, save for the occasional lunch at a local deli. Much of the town's expenditures also do not stay local...supplies, materials, etc. are not produced locally. Even many contractors bidding for town services are not local. So I would venture to guess that less than 10% of the town's expenditure of $150-175 million (schools + municipal budget) actually cycles through the town's local economy. Of course layoffs of any kind ultimately affect the bottom line, hence 9.2% unemployment and resultant economic woes. But the answer is not to spend our way out of the problem, much like it isn't for your own household or for private business. The PROBLEM with government spending is that it almost completely disregards the bottom line. When there is no more cash, municipalities float bonds on which the debt service is staggering (e.g. Anthony Wayne). The debt service becomes part of the town's budget, and much like overspending on a personal credit card, it's ultimately the interest payments that kill you in the future. The answer is to provide fewer services, or to provide what we have more efficiently.
Wayne's World June 22, 2012 at 01:30 PM
For example, I just learned that my friend's water bill in Bergen Cty is less than half or our water bill. They pay United Water directly, whereas Wayne contracts with whatever service provider on our behalf. Either we have crappy negotiators or the town is using the savings toward the budget and the income item is not transparent in the budget. BTW, in government accounting, not getting a raise for the next year is considered a reduction in spending. Try that on for size with your household budget. The truth is, our government can only be funded by the private sector and individual taxpayers. If we no longer have the ability to pay, something has to give. Truth is, other than a 30 year span of prosperity after WWII, this country has always spent much more than it has on hand, and financed the rest with debt. That's ok within certain levels, which was traditionally about 15% of GDP, but now those levels are more like 28% of GDP. You simply cannot get blood from a stone. People need to reduce their expectations of local government, and local government needs to go back to basics of education, public safety and roads. The rest is a luxury. People just don't get it. We are not only mortgaging whatever we have left, but our kids will be left with nothing but debt service. A national default is looming in coming decades - then we'll be a massive version of Greece or Argentina. Good luck with that.
eyes wide shut June 22, 2012 at 01:30 PM
Nose, my point is, how many people in Town Hall make LESS than 25K?
eyes wide shut June 22, 2012 at 01:35 PM
If Ronald Reagan were alive today he'd be considered a liberal. Get rid of taxes???? Are you kidding? How does a town GET RID of taxes..Taxes have been around longer than you and me..We have REPUBLICANS in office NOW and where are we?? And yes we ALL know who one votes for makes a difference..Kinda like the song by The Who.."meet the new boss, same as the old boss" from the song "We don't get fooled again"
Nose Wayne June 22, 2012 at 01:35 PM
How about work needed to be done in towns. Must have three bids and they always go for the low bid. You NOSE the old saying "You get what you paid for". Now after the work is done haphazardly or the contractor walks off the job because he bid to low ,towns have to get another bid out and fix what the old contractor didn't do. What do you think that costs ? Happens alot more than people think. Something that was suppose to cost half a million dollars ends up costing a million.
Support Change June 22, 2012 at 03:18 PM
The WAYNE REPUBLICAN PARTY FOR THE PEOPLE is a conservative Republican Organization as opposed to the Liberal and Moderate Republican Organization that have taxed us to the point of exhaustion. The Wayne Republican Party for the PEOPLE intends to trade in the tax-and-spend philosophy of governing for a more transparent conservative approach. We want to stop the tax INCREASES and live within our means. Every Township has to pay for services. However the Council ought to consider what they are doing to the property tax paying people that live in Wayne. The politicians ought to cosider living within our immediate means and limiting the spending to what is currently being collected rather than raising the property taxes. Looks like the PROPERTY OWNERS OF WAYNE have been FOOLED AGAIN! Next June the TAX-PAYERS of WAYNE will have a CONSERVATIVE CHOICE!
Al Scala June 22, 2012 at 04:09 PM
Marvic....I disagree. Why shouldn't our town employees feel the pain, like many out there. Why should they be immune to this economy. A wage freeze is certainly not the end of the world. They are public servants and as far as I'm concerned held to a higher standard as they're being paid through taxation, after tax dollars, federal and state.I'm not saying to have them live in poverty. We would never be able to employ anybody. A wage freeze now and then would be nice. How many of these jobs are patronage? I'm sure there are some that got their jobs that way. If the private sector can withold raises, then the public sector should do it as well!
Al Scala June 22, 2012 at 04:15 PM
Why does our township administer the water bills? Why are we not billed directly by the local water utility that serves Wayne? Does our town gov't negotiate a better rate for us? If not, then what's the purpose? Does the township add anything to the actual cost? In other words, is the township making money on the water bills? Even if they negotiate a better rate, you'd have to add in the cost to administer the program which is built into our taxes. This naturally includes salaries, bennies, pension costs, space cost,etc., etc. Are we getting a better deal or are we getting shafted? Can someone clarify this for me?
eyes wide shut June 22, 2012 at 05:50 PM
@Support Wayne..Go do your Grandstanding somewhere else.. Not a person from YOUR party will get elected. If Lies and BS were music YOU and YOUR party would be an orchestra..."WE DON'T GET FOOLED AGAIN"
Pad June 22, 2012 at 08:48 PM
The problem is public sector workers are getting higher raises then the private sector and paying alot less for thier health benefits. The police and teachers are paid very well and have benefits that exceed the average private sector union worker and even white collar workers. Yes, there maybe some at the bottom making less but look at the teachers contract and the raises they have received. They push the last one by us before the old contract expired so they could beat the state mandated caps. The BOE has no guts when it comes to the WEA. Maybe because many of them have a direct relative employed by the District including the BOE President. Conflict of interest for sure. Not voting on certain issues is just really a scam because the other members vote and believe me they know how you would have voted. Its just one less vote.
Support Change June 23, 2012 at 03:02 AM
We Won over 10% of the seats we ran for on the Wayne County Committee. The WAYNE REPUBLICAN PARTY FOR THE PEOPLE WAS ESTABLISHED TO BE THE VOICE OF THE PUBLIC AS THE CURRENT POLITICIAN'S VOTING HABITS ARE NOT IN TUNE WITH THE AVERAGE PROPERTY OWNER. Wayne until now has never had another Republican Organization. WAYNE REPUBLICAN PARTY FOR THE PEOPLE has won PEOPLE'S confidence. The VOTERS this June began to vote out the tax-and-spend incumbants. You should consider joining the Wayne Republican Party for the PEOPLE becuase you no longer can stop the movement. We are Proud CONSERVATIVE REPUBLICANS!
Chris Schillander June 23, 2012 at 04:41 AM
I hate to say this, but I am leaving this mess behind. Moving to Port St Lucie, Florida. My taxes on a BRAND NEW home, under 4k. My maintenance fee (gated community) $255 a month, includes basic cable, water, and internet. You pay more than that for a CONDO on valley rd. This whole town, county, and state is ridiculous with the amount of $$ spent. Look at the budget that came in the mail this week, highlight the things that are questionable ($500k in additional expenses in some departments??? does paper and toner really cost that much??). 40 days till i say goodbye to high taxes, jerks speeding down my street during the day with no tickets issued, but getting a parking ticket because i forgot to move my car into my driveway at night, crappy roads (hamburg and alps is a kidney shaker!), ect. 30 years in town, the last 10-12 have seen this place go downhill quick! spend more tax more spend more tax more...good plan!
Nose Wayne June 23, 2012 at 04:54 AM
Chris, come on now,did you see this place go downhill or did you really see this place go to ---------------------------------------------------!!!! 39 days left, and counting.

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