MANTOLOKING — The borough council unanimously adopted the 2021 municipal budget during its council meeting on May 18.
The nearly $6 million in appropriations will cover municipal costs as well as capital and small projects.
The 2021 budget, at $5,995,142, is an increase of $326,190 over the 2020 budget of $5,668,951. But because of 2021 revenues, there will be no rise in the local tax rate, according to Councilman Anthony Amarante.
“We’re very happy that we were able to increase spending and not cut any services and also not have a tax increase,” said Mr. Amarante.
Some notable expense items in the 2021 budget include state pensions and health care increases of $80,280 and $40,262, a beach operations increase of $50,000, since the borough will now outsource its lifeguard service, a dune fertilization program and more.
“We fully expect that the [beach] operations will be self-funding when actual revenue and expenses are finalized,” the councilman said.
The borough will use $690,000 of the surplus balance of $1,407063 to support the 2021 budget. The borough expects to receive around $273,200 in beach badge sales.
Like towns throughout the nation, Mantoloking will receive funding from CARES Act funds throughout 2021, so far receiving $131,572.
Officials used a new process this year, collecting budget requests and disseminating them to the mayor and council before being discussed by the finance committee.
“I would like to thank everyone that was involved,” said Mr. Amarante.
“I just think the process this year working with the township employees, everything went much smoother.”
The councilman said the borough hopes to accelerate that process even more come next year.
“Our next job as the finance committee is we really want to get a decent five-year capital plan in place and identify how we’re going to fund that plan,” said Mr. Amarante.
Mayor Lance White said he, too, is happy with the 2021 budget.
“It seems to me that there’s a lot of moving parts to this budget,” said Mr. White. “I want to thank all that Tony mentioned and I want to include Tony himself being the chairman of that committee. He did a great job and works very, very hard, as does everybody.”
The borough also passed an ordinance that would allow them, if needed, to exceed the municipal budget appropriation limits and establish a cap bank.
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