How did ZERO turn out to be ANOTHER TAX INCREASE in Gloucester Township? Residents growing weary.

Gloucester Township, Camden County, NJ

Gloucester Township Mayor, David Mayer along with Council, may have ANNOUNCED a ZERO increase in this year's tax levy, but what exactly does ZERO mean?
Council still needed to raise revenue for good ole open space which was used for many things then was originally intended as we knew "open space"
Along with GT's local increase, the local schools will always dip their ladles into the pot, along with the County.

For those not familiar with this constant barrage, the County Democratic Machine is like an Octopus with the usual 8 tentacles, with FRIENDS, and FAMILY having a tight network to
co ordinate this see sawing tax elevator that does not contain a DOWN BUTTON. They will continue to do what they do and always expect the usual voting base to put them back on office.
The voters always come through for them, as a great number of that base has or knows someone that works for the Municipal, County, or Vendor chain. They will always have that "Persuasive" way of counting on votes.

After the constant hammering to the residents of Gloucester Township, which have now seen their property taxes rise 42% over the past 7 years, this might finally be getting to everyone regardless of party. This could be a very interesting local election year.

Just a few reasons why it is so expensive to live in Gloucester Township

Gloucester Township, Camden County, NJ

As if Camden County wasn't swinging a large enough wrecking ball of property taxes, Gloucester Township also burdens it's municipal taxpayers with items that are over the top, that cost the local tax payers, and see them moving towards the door, and leaving town.

The township spends, borrows, and taxes, to bring in some LUXURY ITEMS that may not necessarily, be needed at this time of economic hardship. Items that are proposed for hundreds of thousands of dollars, but turn out to cost in the millions. The township hockey rinks improvements and upgrades were introduced at about $800,000 and came in at just under $2 Million.
The township passed bonds (borrowed) under $3 million for turf fields, once again the real amounts with additional spending are nearing $4 Million.

The 5 DAY WORK WEEK has been a sore spot with some residents. The township employees work only a 4 DAY week (except Police), that allows some departments like public works to utilize FRIDAY as an OVERTIME day, along with SATURDAY. There are SOME staggered, work week employees, but that's questionable.

Probably the most troubling issue that flies under the radar, is along with GOLD STANDARD benefits, many municipal workers are reimbursed for what is suppose to be
"out of pocket " co-pays for medical and prescriptions, is reimbursed to them by the taxpayers. Upward from $500 to $750 per year.

We want our public employees to have good benefits but it contradicts the term and purpose "out of pocket". Just to name a few.

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Will the "machine" place primary challengers in an obscure location on the Camden County ballots?

Will what appears to be challenges in the Gloucester Township, and now Cherry Hill local races for Mayor and Council seats, the candidates are wondering where will the Camden County Clerks place them on the ballot.
It is a complicated process, with at least 7 Gubernatorial candidates at the top of the ballot, along with as many as 5 Freeholder candidates, but where will that leave local candidates on the ballot with the main County incumbents, occupying the 1st Democratic column?

Alex Law encountered this very same thing in the last primary race for the 1st Congressional district. and may have been somewhat far out of sight in the ballot, that questions still remain as to the ballot location process leaves more questions, then answers. It seem to make it difficult for new people to enter the process, and get notices on the ballot.

Double digit property tax increase again in 2018 very possible, after election year borrowing

Gloucester Township, Camden County, NJ

On the heels of a 12%, 2016 property tax increase, Gloucester Township is poised to be back in a double digit tax increase again for 2018. The township has bonded more in the past few years in an effort to head off tax increases, but those bills also come due. The down side to all of the borrowing, is that "debt service" allows the township to raise property taxes above the state's 2% cap.

Gloucester Township has had some sizable tax increases in the past, including, 26% in 2010, 9% in 2014, and again an additional 12% in 2016. Those property tax increase have been called timely by pundits, as they have occurred months after the local elections, and the incumbents were re-elected.

In 2017, this is once again a local election year, with the Mayor, and council already have approved a $6.6 Million bond to borrow more money to again avoid another tax increase. It is expected that those officials will try to introduce another "zero" increase in the budget, which is now approximately 42% higher than when they came into office in 2010.

History indicates that the township will indeed increase the budget in 2018, and along with "banking" the 2016, 2% cap allowed, they will add that to the increase that could take the property tax increase well into the double digits for next year.(They have banked the cap frequently on the past) The township appears to be losing residents over these taxes, and more vacant homes are become very obviously visible.

The township budgets are available on the township website, but most residents do not find them user friendly, other say it's impossible to follow.

How hard has the Gloucester Township property tax increases hit your Holiday wallet?

Gloucester Township, Camden County

As Gloucester Township residents rested their taxpayer revolt hats, another taxing reality has taken shape. What the huge bite out of your wallet, did to the money you were hoping to have for the December Holiday gifts that you wanted to buy family members and loved ones. Some folks are going the route of "bargain hunting", others are cutting back. However there are those who would like to crawl up into a ball, until the Holidays are over, because they just don't have the means to buy gifts for those they have in the past. The property tax increases have taken their toll on not only folks who pay their taxes quarterly, but those who pay it in their mortgage. The new monthly mortgage has jumped up enough that less or no money could be saved for the holidays.
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Those seniors that get a property tax freeze, will still be required to pay the higher property tax, then wait for the State to reimburse them months later. Some are losing their homes for the higher property taxes which has increased to higher than their mortgage ever was. Gloucester Township Politicians should have thought this through hard before hurting the people of the town the way that they did. Residents are people. It hurts the people of Gloucester Township

Recovery Centers of America making another bid to Build in Gloucester Township

Gloucester Township, Camden County, NJ

Representatives of Recovery Centers of America are to appear Dec. 14 before the Gloucester Township board, which denied approval to the company's project in March. This has not passed the previous two times, before that very same board, as the residents of Gloucester Township packed the room, most in opposition of the addiction recovery center.

Most felt that the location was the biggest issue, with the centers, and residential project being located on Peter Cheeseman Road, directly across the street from Camden County College, and other schools near by.

Residents listened for hours as the testimonies of those representing the center spoke. Some very good points were made on behalf of the need for the center. The residential recovery process would have included many home/apartment structures for the "sober living" development portion of the recovery, that could last for months.

Many involved in discussions following the meeting, asked why this project would not be better suited in the "Lakeland" section of the township, as it already has other facilities that are a more comfortable fit for the project.

The RCA representatives made a great presentation, and surely exemplified the horrors that families are living and dealing with this heart breaking addiction. Many stating that they knew someone afflicted with this addiction. The board allowed all RCA representatives to speak in length, and listened attentively, at times asking very important questions, both in understanding the "illness", it's repercussions, and the impact that it might have on the area. Both sides were for the most part respectful of one and other for the duration.

It all may just come back to the most important question for Gloucester Township residents. Location, Location, Location.

The Gloucester Township tax revolution gains steam as the only major credible newspaper in the area puts it out there.

Gloucester Township, Camden County

After a very fierce and energetic council meeting Monday night in Gloucester Township, the fervor has not settled down. In fact it has been ramping up as the residents and taxpayers of the town are lighting up the social media world.
The Philadelphia Inquirer broke the story about the angry residents in attendance when during the "public portion" those taxpayers let council members really have it.
One after another residents stepped up to the mic and told their story of the hardships that they are enduring, due to the huge debt and spending that helped fuel this rather "hefty" property tax increase.

Gloucester Township News will continue to keep residents informed as the information, and facts become available.

After huge property tax increase, Gloucester Township residents address council members.

Gloucester Township, Camden County

Gloucester Township residents packed the council room, as they express their anger over a huge tax increase, having local residents paying between $400 and $1400 more every year for property taxes. Some told some very sad and heart wrenching stories of trying to survive already on existing taxes, other expressed great anger, telling council members
"enough is enough". Council members were obviously prepared for the residents, but it did very little to give residents justifiable reasons to raise their taxes so high, after just having done so 2 years prior.
Council videos are available at: Part 1 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vO8QpU_Hpls&feature=youtu.be
Part 2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1_B6Cd4pj0&feature=youtu.be

How does borrowing and debt effect your property taxes?

Gloucester Township, Camden County, NJ

الوليد When a New Jersey municipality wants to raise your property taxes, the state holds them to a 2% tax increase CAP. The municipality must stay within that 2% if they want to raise property tax on it's residents EXCEPT.......Debt service. The tax increase can go well over 2% if the municipality has debt. Again, the debt service is not included in the state 2% CAP.

Theoretically, the more debt your town has, the more they can increase taxes above the CAP. Other reasons are described in a story by the Asbury Park Press, called
"Why the 2% CAP is not always 2%.