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Posted on: February 15, 2017

Passaic County Introduces Budget With No Increase in Tax Levy

(PATERSON, NJ) – On February 14, 2017, the Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders introduced its 2017 budget with no increase in the tax levy, holding taxes flat while continuing important investments and programs. Passaic County continues to implement and execute sound fiscal management practices resulting in the County’s highest bond rating in recent history. Standard and Poor’s, an independent financial services company, commented in its January 17, 2017 rating of Passaic County that it maintains its AA bond rating – the second highest available – because of its strong management, financial policies, adequate budget flexibility, and low net debt levels compared to reserves.


“Passaic County is in its strongest financial position in its history because we are implementing management practices and procedures that mandate conservative spending, working in partnership with the employee unions to tackle insurance costs, and are joining with our municipalities and neighboring counties to negotiate practical and cost saving shared service agreements,” stated Passaic County Freeholder and Budget Committee Chairman Pat Lepore. “We are holding taxes flat without sacrificing critical investments in our infrastructure, the Passaic County Park System, and vital social programs serving our seniors and veterans. This budget is a model for local and county governments in New Jersey and the nation.”


The 2017 Passaic County Budget, in addition to keeping taxes flat, makes critical investments, including:


  • Maintaining, repairing, or repaving 533 lane miles of County roads and 350 bridges and culverts;
  • Investing in the Passaic County Park System, including a $3.5 million dollar renovation to the Garret Mountain Reservation, $1.5 million dollar renovation to the Weasel Brook Park and historic Vandherhoef House, and a $1 million dollar investment in a new turf athletic field at Goffle Brook Park;
  • Fully funding programs and departments that are providing a social safety net for our most vulnerable residents, including Preakness Healthcare Center, veteran programs, and the meals on wheels food delivery service to homebound seniors;
  • A complete repair and rehabilitation of the Passaic County Court House Annex, a County-owned building listed on the National and State Register of Historic Place for adaptive reuse by the Passaic County Judiciary; and
  • Working in cooperation with Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia Valdez, Sheriff Richard Berdnik, and Assignment Judge Ernest Caposella to implement bail reform to keep low level offenders out of the Passaic County Jail.


“This budget not only holds the tax levy flat, but strategically invests in so many important projects and programs vital to Passaic County residents,” stated Passaic County Freeholder Director Sandi Lazzara. “This budget is the culmination of many years of responsible financial planning and the implementation of responsible fiscal practices.”


“We are not using smoke and mirrors to keep taxes flat. In fact, revenue projections are overly conservative so that the County remains flexible in handling any financial circumstances we may encounter and can continue to provide the high level of constituent services our residents deserve,” added Freeholder Director Lazzara.

To download the Power Point Presentation on the 2017 Budget, click here- http://passaiccountynj.org/DocumentCenter/View/7317

To see the full budget for 2017, click here - http://passaiccountynj.org/DocumentCenter/View/7330

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