East Orange, NJ, March 27, 2017: The East Orange City Council voted during last night’s Council Meeting to accept the budget proposal that was first introduced by Mayor Lester E. Taylor III on March 13, 2017.
Following two weeks of consultation between the administration finance team and the City Council’s budget consultant, the original proposal was slightly revised, but still provides some financial relief for our homeowners and businesses in the form of the .5% tax decrease that was presented during the Mayor’s 2017 Budget Address.
“As originally introduced, the budget represented the culmination of three years of an aggressive plan to bring East Orange back to true financial stability,” said Mayor Taylor.
“To get to this point, we had to be exceptionally fiscally conservative, as well as innovative. We’ve reduced overlap, we’ve cut down on redundancy, we’ve increased efficiency and we’ve tapped into new sources revenue.”
“I know that the threats to federal and state funding are very real under the administration of President Donald Trump and I want to assure the people of East Orange that this proposed budget takes into account a variety of scenarios, including radical funding shifts that may affect critical programs in our community,” he added. “We have strived to continue to grow our fund balance in order to help ensure stable taxes for years to come and reduce our reliance on debt.”
Mayor Taylor said he is hopeful that the council’s acceptance of the revised proposal will further streamline the challenging task of finalizing a budget that is adopted on (or even ahead) of time.
“For the past three years, my administration has worked cooperatively with our City Council to create a budget that best serves the immediate needs of our citizens, but always keeps an eye on securing our long-term fiscal future,” he said. "It is this same spirit of cooperation that we intend to get this 2017 budget adopted and working for the people of East Orange.”