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Sea Bright Budget Adopted With 3-Cent Tax Increase

SEA BRIGHT: After months of waiting for assistance from the federal government, the borough council has adopted the municipal budget.

Sea Bright Chief Financial Officer Michael Bascom said the borough received a $1.002 million Community Development Block Grant for Essential Services, to aid Sea Bright after the impact of Hurricane Sandy. The grant is about $777,000 less than what the borough had applied for and received in the past.

Bascom said the borough is in a position where it will be able to apply for and receive the grant again in 2015 and possibly 2016.

The amended budget calls for a 3-cent tax increase, to $0.802 per $100 of assessed property. The original budget, introduced in spring, had a $0.772 tax rate, and was a $9.121 million budget. The tax increase means the total amount to be raised by taxes is up about $139,000, to a total $3.749 million.

Bascom said there was no tax increase in 2013 and a minimal one in 2012.

Sea Bright will use $420,000 of its surplus, where it originally budgeted zero surplus funds to fill its budget hole. Bascom said cuts were made to spending, to reduce the budget overall.

In addition, more grant money -- such as a $60,000 for zoning code enforcement from CDBG Disaster Recovery grant program and $16,221 for a Smart Growth Grant – was added to the borough’s revenue in the budget.

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