Lavallette residents will see a slight increase in their property taxes for 2019, but officials said the borough will continue to boast one of the lowest property tax burdens in New Jersey.
Officials on Monday introduced the borough’s 2019 spending plan, which will add up to $9,119,211. The budget will rise by 1.57 percent, or $140,976, as compared to 2018. The borough will utilize $3,163,238 in surplus and other funding to keep a property tax increase to $0.005 – one-half cent – per $100 of assessed real estate valuation. In all, $5,955,972 will be raised through local property taxes.
“Last year we were flat, we had no increase, and we went from sixth or seventh down to the third lowest tax rate in the state of New Jersey,” said Mayor Walter LaCicero. “This should keep us in that area.”
Lavallette has one of the state’s lowest municipal property tax burdens in New Jersey, which in turn has the highest property tax burden in the nation. Last year, the average borough resident paid a combined total of $6,817 in property taxes (municipal, school and county taxes included), or 0.971 per $100. The New Jersey average property tax burden is $8,767.
LaCicero said spending will be up slightly this year mainly due to the number of engineering and improvement projects underway in town. Lavallette is utilizing engineering services to help oversee the federal beach replenishment project, install new bulkheading, develop plans for dredging projects and apply for a state permit to manage beach sand that has expired.
“We have a tremendous amount going on, and because of that we need the oversight of the engineer,” said LaCicero.
The good news is that a “healthy surplus” has kept down tax rates which also allowing the borough to complete a county-mandated revaluation without borrowing or dipping into the operating budget.