Union City to vote on $104.8 million budget on Friday evening

UNION CITY — The Union City Board of Commissioners plan to take a final vote on Friday on the city’s budget for the 2013 fiscal year.
The budget, which was introduced at a Commissioners Meeting on Oct. 11, is approximately $104.8 million, a decrease of about $400,000 from the 2012 budget.
The budget also includes an increase in tax revenue from the town’s property owners, from $60.7 million to $63.7 million, although Mayor Brian Stack said that this would not mean an increase in the tax rate. “[Millions in revenue] is coming from some surpluses, some other revenues, and doesn’t mean an increase in taxes,” Stack said. “I’d love to be able to decrease taxes, right now I can’t, but the commissioners and myself doing our best to keep them stable.”
Additionally, about $2.8 million was added to the budget via a grant awarded to the city from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. According to Stack, it would be used primarily for road upkeep and infrastructure maintenance, and was given to the city due to traffic that tends to clog the city’s streets when construction or congestion takes place on Route 495, which runs through the town and is administered by the Port Authority.
Among the larger expenditures, employee health insurance will rise from $15.2 million in 2012 to $16.7 million next year. Police Department salaries will rise from $17.1 million to approximately $18 million.
Keeping a city clean also doesn’t come cheap. Street cleaning and garbage pickup and recycling are also costly, totaling more than $6 million together.
The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. at the Early Childhood Center at 2200 JFK Blvd. Members of the public can come speak out before a final vote takes place. – Dean DeChiaro

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