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On April 7, 2021, the Hawthorne Borough Council voted to introduce a budget for calendar year 2021 after a presentation by Mayor Richard S. Goldberg. The $23,176 448 budget requires a municipal purposes property tax increase of 1.9%, the sixth consecutive year that the increase has been less than 2%. For the average homeowner with a property valuation of $382,800 this means an increase of $45. In his presentation, Mayor Goldberg noted that 87% of this tax increase is due to just one factor - new, more costly contracts for hauling garbage, recycling, yard waste and leaves. Without a successful defense against a challenge by the losing bidder for garbage and recycling, the cost and the tax rate would be even higher. The budget as introduced leaves spending $980,663 below what would be permitted under New Jersey's appropriations cap law, and taxes $2,535,345 below what would be permitted under the tax levy cap.
The Council's action also approved a separate $3,3686,223 budget for Hawthorne's Water Utility, which is supported entirely by water fees, and also contributes $120,000 to the general budget.
A public hearing on the budget has been scheduled to be held during the regular Council meeting on May 5th, following which the Council is expected to vote on final adoption.
The official budget document for this introduced budget, along with an explanatory presentation and a one-page summary, is available for review here.