Archive for the ‘Citizens Forum’ Category

UCCF 7/20/17: Human Services Shakeup

We learned at the last freeholder meeting of a retirement:
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Which explained some of the reasons behind Ordinance 785-2017 calling for the following changes in the Union County Administrative Code:
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UCCF 7/20/17: Ordinances on Salary and Administrative Code

Two ordinances that passed unanimously on second reading:

784-2017 AN ORDINANCE FIXING THE SALARIES OF THE COUNTY COUNSEL AND DEPARTMENT HEADS.

Some questions:
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But no answers. Another ordinance:

785-2017 AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND “THE LAWS OF UNION COUNTY: ADMINISTRATIVE CODE AND POLICIES AND GENERAL LEGISLATION” BY AMENDING PART 1, CHAPTER 1, ARTICLE XVI, DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES; ARTICLE XX, DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONAL SERVICES; ARTICLE XXIV, DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.; CHAPTER 49, FEES, ARTICLE V, ENGINEERING & PUBLIC WORKS FEES TO ADD § 49-10.; CHAPTER 100, PERSONNEL–ARTICLE XVI, EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK and CHAPTER 128, SMOKING POLICY.

Another stab:
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For those interested in answers:

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UCCF 7/20/17: Roselle’s Folly and the Return of the Prodigal

As a public service Freeholder Chairman Bergen warned about an invasive bug coming to Union County:
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Coincidentally, earlier in the evening we learned of the return of a familiar name as a developer of the Roselle Mind and Body Complex that some Roselle residents warned would destroy their borough as if it were an ash tree facing a horde of Emerald Ash Borers.

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UCCF 4/27/17: Hoarding Surplus


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After months of review the freeholders came up with a savings of $724 thousand to get the amount to be raised by taxation for 2017 to $354,769,823 (an increase of $9,495,027 from the 2016 tax levy of $345,274,766). As you will see in this blog there could have been NO tax increase (as is the case in at least three other counties) or there could have even have been a substantial tax DECREASE. It all comes down to the surplus.
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Surplus is an essential aspect of government budgeting. Budgets need to prepared at the beginning of the year and money anticipated to be coming from the state or federal governments cannot be included. Usually that money comes in throughout the year and the surplus remains.

In 2014 Union County sold Runnells Hospital.

With that as background the rest of this story will be told in spreadsheets based on data from Union County budgets going back to 2005 and surplus figures from all counties for 2016 and from the fourteen counties that have their budgets online for 2017 as well as the corresponding tax amounts for 2016 and 2017. Draw your own conclusions.

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UCCF 4/27/17: Buying Moody’s Rating

According to the check registry:
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MOODYS UC PAYMENTS

FITCH-UC

UCCF 4/27/17: UCPAC Stiffs Sculptor

According to check registry data Union County has paid $2,058,235 to the Union County Performing Arts Center (UCPAC) from 2004 through 2016 plus about a quarter of a million dollars to fix its organ. Yet ….
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And when it was pointed out how much the county had already subsidized UCPAC:
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Presumably the $5,000 donated sculpture:
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UCCF 4/27/17: Déjà vu and Mountain Biking Again

Tonight’s meeting had the budget adopted with several points of contention, a sculptor stiffed by UCPAC, $50,000 for war and, for you nostalgia buffs….this:
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As for mountain biking in Watchung Reservations here are eight more commenters:

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