LINWOOD — Local taxes are set to go up 3.9 percent under a budget presented by City Council on Wednesday night.

This would mean that for a home assessed at the city average of $260,000, the portion to fund local government would increase by $93.60. It does not include any school, county or other property taxes.

But with debates still going on in council about how much surplus to use and other issues, that rate could change. City Councilman Alex Marino, who chairs council's Revenue and Finance Committee, said the proposed increase dropped from 4.4 to 3.6 cents on Wednesday alone.

Marino also said the city was considering one or two layoffs and between one and six furlough days for municipal employees.

Like many towns across New Jersey, Linwood will see less state aid. The city will get $571,608 from the state this year, a 20 percent decrease from last year, and a 27 percent decrease from 2006.

Additionally, Marino said the city will have to pay more for insurance and its contribution to public employee pension funds.

To make up the difference, the city planned to dip deeper into its surplus than last year.

The city would use $482,017 of its surplus, 5.9 percent more than last year, and 57 percent of the total surplus.

Linwood would also raise taxes by $334,123 overall.

The total number of city employees has also been trimmed through attrition from 115 to 98, Marino said. He also said practically all cell phones have been recalled throughout the city. Only one, in a firetruck, is still active.

Council scheduled a final budget vote for May 26.

Contact Derek Harper:

609-272-7046

 The Linwood municipal budget: 2009, 2010

Total budget: $14,023,529*, $12,798,737

Tax rate per $100 of assessed value: $0.922, $0.958

Tax rate change by percent: 3.25%, 3.9%

Amount to be raised by taxes: $7,190,988, $7,525,121

Ratable base: $780,446,294, $785,144,340 

Surplus funds applied to the budget: $455,363, $482,017

Remaining surplus: $410,639, $363,626

Tax bill for home assessed at $250,000: $2,305, $2,395

*Figure includes $1.3 million in unrelated school spending