It was a packed house at the last Borough Council meeting. Channel 2 News was present to hear homeowners ask the Council for help with their property taxes. Following the Revaluations in Matawan, ordered by Monmouth County, many homeowners had their property assessments raised substantially. Homeowners came to the Council meeting asking the Council to request the County to reassess their properties. It seems that the Revaluations were done when the market values were higher. Thus the property owners are reporting they are paying on inflated assessed value for their homes. The problem lies with Monmouth County. The revaluations were ordered by the County. The Borough can request a reassessment. However, the County can decline.
Other Borough Council business was postponed. The Council did manage to approve the Fireworks for July 4th, approve a volunteer Firefighter and pay bills. To the best of our knowledge no elected official or their respective family businesses were on the Bill List.
The Mayor did mention ways the Council is cutting costs. The Boro Administrator, Bill Garafolo, reported the Budget is lean. Borough employees were credited with helping the Borough by accepting a new health plan, which will produce an immediate savings. Next year possibly saving the Borough $500,000+. The implementation of the 4 day work week has saved the Borough money in utilities. While the employees work the same number of hours per week, the work day itself is longer. Personnel changes produced cost savings. The Borough Administrator alone is part time and does not receive health benefits or retirement contributions. Mr. Garafolo is putting together a 5 year plan for Matawan. The Borough has also applied for grants (free money) for Road Improvements and other projects. Many residents were unaware of the many things the Council is doing to cut costs and plan for the future of Matawan. Mayor Buccellato continues to work on a Group for the Improvement of Main St. and will be making an announcement in the near future.
Still waiting for the Ordinance that prevents elected officials from doing work for the Borough while in office. It seems like a no-brainer, so what is holding it up??????
In these economic tough times, Matawan is cutting back as much as possible. Perhaps if the Board of Education (which passed its Budget for the first time in a long, long time) and Matawan Borough keep to the necessary items we will be on the right track.
See you at the next meeting....