Board members Ann Roseman and Ben Forest at Tuesday night’s session. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi)
By DUSTIN RACIOPPI
The Red Bank Board of Education unanimously passed a $19 million budget Tuesday night, a spending plan that will increase the tax levy if voters approve it next month.
Even with $1.4 million in reductions in the general operating portion of the budget, to $14.1 million, the budget will result in a 3.75 percent increase to the tax rate due to a drop in revenues and the state-mandate that local school districts use surplus funds to compensate for state aid cuts, school officials said.
Property owners would see an approximate 2 cent increase per $100 of valuation their tax bills, to $0.5371. For the owner of a home assessed at the borough-average $405,000, that would mean $2,175 in taxes, excluding levies for the the borough government, the regional high school and Monmouth County.
To make up for a steep cut in state aid to the two-school system, positions had to be eliminated though there haven’t been any layoffs and, among other extracurricular programs, all athletics at the middle school were dropped.
“To me that’s just incredible,” said a displeased Ben Forest, who heads the board’s finance committee.