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Ridgewood Municipal Budget Hearings Begin Monday

Two special meetings have been set up to discuss the 2013 municipal budget.

The Ridgewood Village Council will be hearing from department heads and top administrators next week as it explores the possibility of submitting a flat budget to the state.

On Monday, several department heads will be submitting their budgetary requests to the council beginning at 8 p.m. The meeting will be held on the third floor of Village Hall, in the court room. The public is invited to participate. Another special meeting is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Pat Mancuso Senior Center (first floor of Village Hall).

At least $500,000 or more would need to be cut if the council is to seek a flat budget or one without any tax increase, Village Manager Ken Gabbert said earlier this month.

The draft he submitted calls for a 1.1 percent tax increase and would necessitate layoffs as well as departmental restructuring. Hitting a zero'd budget would almost certainly trigger greater layoffs.

Mike Kender February 22, 2013 at 03:29 PM
The current council doesn't have a lot of maneuvering room on the budget because the previous council was dumb enough to lock in raises for the police and fire unions for another 4 years. The next opportunity to do any cost cutting in those two areas, which I believe are the biggest parts of the municipal budget, won't occur until around 2017 thanks to the previous council's ineptitude. We have good police and fire personnel, but why did the previous council give them multi-year raises in the middle of a severe recession? The way that their pension plans work, these raises will result in increased costs to the village for decades as they are locked in to pensions for the officers and firefighters who retire before the end of the contract. We could have used the Tiger Team's common sense back then.
News Man February 22, 2013 at 08:55 PM
A good start might be to limit Dept.head "Wish Lists" without them suggesting source of financial user support for the Recreation and Graydon improvement projects. All they do is maintain the "Status Quo Preserve" group thinking that go no where.

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