Tentative Hazlet School Budget Includes 1.6-Cent Tax Increase
After two years with zero increase, the tax levy is anticipated to increase by $668,419.
The Hazlet Township Board of Education approved a tentative budget at their regular action meeting March 4, according to a press release issued by School Business Administrator Christopher Mullins.
The $49,980,443 total general budget tentatively approved for the 2013-14 academic year is about a $1.6 million increase from the 2012-13 total general budget of $48,324,762. The total general budget includes a $1,550,000 contribution from the district's capital reserve account.
The operating budget, which is a portion of the total general budget that covers the day-to-day costs of running a school district, increased by $210,963, or 0.44 percent, according to Mullins.
The increase in the budget resulted in a $668,419 increase in the tax levy. The amount to be raised by taxes over the 2013-14 academic year is anticipated to be $34,108,882. Even so, Mullins explained, the increase to the tax levy was $1,345,419 under the permitted two percent cap. School taxes have not been raised since the 2010-11 academic year.
The estimated school tax rate for the 2013-14 year, including debt service and other adjustments, is expected to increase 1.6 cents to $1.4482 per $100 of assessed valuation, according to a copy of the tentative budget available on the district website. The 2012 school tax rate was $1.432 per $100 of assessed valuation.
In effect, a property with an assessed valuation of $300,000 could expect to pay $4,344.60 in school taxes for the year, a $48.60 increase from 2012.
State aid is anticipated to remain exactly the same as the 2012-13 academic year at $12,731,511.
“This budget will continue to assist the district in implementing its mission of educating our students to achieve their maximum potential,” Superintendent Bernard Bragen said in a press release.
The budget is a tentative one and approval by the Board of Education only authorized Mullins to submit it for review by the Executive Superintendent of Monmouth County.
A public hearing on the tentative budget will be held by the Hazlet Township Board of Education at 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 21 at Raritan High School. Residents will have the opportunity to ask questions or make comments about the budget before the board votes on whether or not to approve the finalized budget.
The public no longer has the opportunity to vote on the budget unless the increase to the tax levy exceeds 2 percent.
Editor's note: You can find a copy of the user friendly budget here.