VINELAND — City Council on Tuesday introduced a proposed $56.8 million budget developed by Mayor Ruben Bermudez’s local government administration.
The budget would raise $29.3 million through local purpose taxes, $429.74 less than that allowed under the 2 percent cap imposed by state law.
Vineland will be aided by almost $6.2 million in state aid, about the same amount the city received from the state in 2012.
The spending plan sets a preliminary local purpose tax rate of 78 cents per $100 of assessed property value. The local purpose tax rate set by last year’s budget was $1.34 per $100 of assessed property value.
The difference stems from the results of the city’s first revaluation since 1969.
The recent revaluation almost doubled the city’s property assessment from $2.1 billion to $4 billion. It was ordered by the Cumberland County Board of Taxation after the city’s full market value fell to about 54 percent of its actual worth. Revaluations are designed to bring property values up to 100 percent of their full market value. That creates a more equitable tax situation for property owners, and gives municipalities more flexibility in various financial matters, such as bonding.
Last year’s budget totaled almost $58 million and resulted in no increase in the local purpose tax rate.
Before the revaluation, the average residential property assessment last year was $95,700, meaning the owner of such a property paid $1,282 in municipal taxes. The new average assessment was not available Tuesday, but the owner of a home newly assessed at $175,000 would pay $1,365 under the new preliminary tax rate.
City Council introduced the budget by a vote of 5-0 and without comment.
City Council will now undertake its own review of the budget before finally adopting the fiscal plan. City Council must take final action on the budget by May 14.
In other business Tuesday, City Council voted 5-0 to oppose the state issuing any permits that would allow companies to operate a hazardous waste treatment facility at the former Pure Earth Inc. hazardous waste site.
Tradebe Environmental Services LLC, a Spanish company, is seeking to open the facility at the Pure Earth site. The company is in talks with the state Department of Environmental Protection that could lead to the issuance of the necessary permits.
City officials said while Tradebe has a good track record at its other facilities around the world, they still fear possible contamination of the site from its operations. The Pure Earth site is in a city industrial park on North Mill Road.
“We do not want this company here,” City Councilman Paul Spinelli said.
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