Borough Meeting Highlights 06-03-2020

Borough Meeting Highlights 06-03-2020

Dear West Wildwood Neighbors,

The monthly Borough meeting was held on Wednesday, June 3 at 5pm via Zoom and approximately 14 taxpayers attended.  Mayor Fox, Commissioners Golden and Korobellis, Solicitor Bittner, Municipal Clerk Donna Frederick and Deputy Clerk Carl O’Hala were also present.  The Borough CFO, Elaine Crowley, and Borough Auditor, Scott Barron attended as well.

Various Ordinances and Resolutions were read and were mostly related to housekeeping issues.  You can view the actual items on the Borough’s website.

A late agenda item was added as Resolution 2020-049 and was introduced.  It relates to applying for a DOT grant application for the reconstruction of Pine Avenue.

The balance of the meeting was spent on explanation and approval of the 2020 municipal/Borough general budget and the 2020 sewer utility budget.

Highlights of both 2020 budgets include the following:

The municipal/Borough tax rate will remain unchanged @ 1.085, a 0.00% change from 2019.  Congratulations to everyone who worked on the budget!

In an effort to keep the municipal tax rate static and help balance the budget the use of $410,000 from fund balance will be utilized, leaving $75,000 for future use.

The municipal/Borough total appropriations have increased from $2.869 million to $2.923 million in 2020, which includes approximately $54,000 in additional debt service.

Costs related to health insurance coverage has increased by more than $75k as new employees were added and existing employees who previously were not covered, have opted to participate in the Borough’s health insurance coverage.  No current employee has requested to use the $2,000 waiver of health coverage provided by the Borough.

Since a new appropriation has been added in 2020 for an in-house solicitor, the costs related to this hiring is approximately $75,000.  In addition, legal appropriations of almost $110k remain the same as the prior year to cover legal bills and settlement costs.

Borough employee head count includes 15 full-time employees, 6 part-time employees and 3 commissioners.  When reviewing the user-friendly budget, these numbers do not agree to what was provided in the meeting.  Minor details should be noted.

The sewer utility budget for 2020 will be supported by using $60,000 of its additional surplus.  This will be used to offset additional payroll, benefit costs and more than $30K in additional CMCMUA billing.  There will be no increase in the 2020 sewer rates.

The school tax rate is expected to decrease by 4.8 cents over the 2020/21 school tax year.  Savings are the result of a decrease in enrollment, special services & transportation costs.  The BOWW is participating in a feasibility study by Stockton State that may result in recommendations for the BOWW school board to consider.

The county tax rates have not yet been finalized.  As such, a firm total tax rate can not be provided at this time.

Other discussions included:

  • Beach cleanup was performed prior to Memorial Day weekend.  Rain and wind storms contributed to the current buildup of straw on the beach.  Equipment has been ordered to help with the clean-up process.
  • Mayor Fox indicated his ethics violations hearing date is scheduled for June 26th.
  • The community yard sale has been postponed until possibly September.
  • The bulk trash collection is scheduled for Monday, June 8th.
  • Employees are back in the office and working as scheduled.
  • The Borough offices remain closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sincerely,

The CTWWW Advisory Council

 

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