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The Town Hall

It was basically about an hour of infomercial followed by answers to questions from the audience unless you’re name is Mark Kirschenbaum or David Schneck.

Mark was told that since he lives in Wall he can’t ask a question and that if he makes any trouble he would be asked to leave.  Mr. Kirschenbaum has asked questions at several Borough Council meetings and was always very civil.  The way our mayor treated him today however was entirely uncivil and embarrassing to witness.

I was permitted to ask a question, which I thought was a very good question.  The mayor emphasized over and over that there would be no overall increase in the amount of property tax collected for the municipality and that probably the amount collected for the county wouldn’t change either.  He couldn’t make any guarantees for the school portion but it’s unlikely that would change by very much.  Even though the total property values in Belmar went from about $1 billion to about $1.6 billion as a result of the reval, the tax rate would go from about 1.9 cents per 100 dollars to about 1.18 cents to compensate.  Net revenue wouldn’t change.

The problem is that he spent the whole time encouraging people to appeal their assessments, explaining how to do it, telling them to call Robin Kirk for help and even gave out his own email and phone number.  But this doesn’t help his constituents as a whole.  We still have to pay the same amount of total tax.  For every constituent that appeals at the mayor’s urging and is successful, the rest of us are going to have to make up the difference.  If everybody appeals then we’re right back where we started.  I said they I wasn’t planning to appeal but if everybody else is then I might have to do so also.

The mayor’s response was to ask the audience to please ignore my question.

Unfortunately I had a problem with my camcorder and it didn’t tape the last 30 minutes of the meeting so I don’t have that part of the meeting on tape. (I accidentally had it taping to the camera’s internal memory, which was almost full, instead of taping to the memory card which has an 8 hour capacity. I won’t make that mistake again.)  Fortunately the Borough taped the meeting too so when they post it you can see the part of the meeting I failed to record.  When it’s up on You Tube I’ll embed it here.


  1. Eugene Creamer wrote:

    the mayor should encourage residents to appeal the LOW property assessments for neighborhood nuisances.
    D’Jais improvement assessment went down from $300K to less than $50K.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 9:29 am | Permalink
  2. Matt should resign wrote:

    He allows Union Reps from all over the state at ask questions at Council meetings. matt is a disgrace.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 10:12 am | Permalink
  3. Aileen fahy wrote:

    At the 1:08:40 mark I ask about the PILOT program and whether they’ll negotiate a deal whereby the school get’s revenue. (Typically, schools don’t get tax revenue under PILOT programs, and with redevelopment scenarios may not get revenue for up to 30 years). Mr. Doherty is on record saying he’s all for “looking into ways where the school gets revenue”. He ended by saying that “nothing has been negotiated yet” with the developer of the two new projects.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 10:25 am | Permalink
  4. admin wrote:

    We’ll see if there is anything in the redevelopment contract for the school.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 10:38 am | Permalink
  5. OLD MAN wrote:

    Please can he just move to maybe Alaska?

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 11:18 am | Permalink
  6. Eugene Creamer wrote:

    Besides Teterboro, Lower Alloways Creek Township in Salem County (pop. 1700) has no municipal or local school taxes.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 12:07 pm | Permalink
  7. Tom Dilberger wrote:

    #5 – Don’t despair. I’m using all my influence with the Trump people to secure that open plumb ambassadorship to Borneo for Matt.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 1:50 pm | Permalink
  8. Guest wrote:

    To expand on the point of #3, the Mayor and Business Administrator jump on the fact that some building, I believe the one third occupied building at 5th & Main, has no school age children as residents. First, what guarantee is there that school aged children will never reside in any new housing units? Second, who makes up the loss of taxes for school purposes when the redeveloped properties are converted to PILOT properties? More smoke and mirrors.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 3:44 pm | Permalink
  9. admin wrote:

    And kids could always still move into that building.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 3:46 pm | Permalink
  10. Anonymous wrote:

    Federal Fair Housing laws?

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 5:22 pm | Permalink
  11. Aileen fahy wrote:

    Using his argument about kids or no kids in the new bldgs: All Belmar households with no kids in the school should be exempt from paying school taxes. Too bad I didn’t think to alert the audience to talk to Robbin Kirk about that after the meeting 😉

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 5:35 pm | Permalink
  12. admin wrote:

    Or the folks that send their kids to private schools.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 5:37 pm | Permalink
  13. Aileen fahy wrote:

    #8 to answer your question about who makes up the loss of tax revenue – we do. If there is additional children in the school and that makes the school hire another teacher for example, we’ll have to raise the budget.

    Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 5:44 pm | Permalink
  14. Anonymous wrote:

    Tax appeal: add bldg & land amounts then multiple x 1.18?

    February 23, 2017 deadline for filing Appeals to Monmouth County?

    Monday, January 16, 2017 at 1:05 am | Permalink
  15. Tom Dilberger wrote:

    The dumb “school” is like a malignant cancerous growth on the town.

    Monday, January 16, 2017 at 6:42 am | Permalink
  16. Guest wrote:

    #13 to add to your answer, we do, wheather there are more children or less. The properties being “redeveloped” now pay school taxes while in the future they may not. The taxes required to operate the school will not change, thus the amount previously paid by the redeveloped properties will become the burden of the remaining taxpayers in town.

    Monday, January 16, 2017 at 6:45 am | Permalink
  17. Tom Dilberger wrote:

    I have a question way off subject – Are there any real “inventions?” (“Flash of Genius”)

    Monday, January 16, 2017 at 6:54 am | Permalink
  18. Teddy Ehmann wrote:

    Regarding these posts and 47 of the pre-town hall meeting posts Jan. 5, 2017 ON FACEBOOK,

    Monday, January 16, 2017 at 8:31 am | Permalink
  19. Anonymous wrote:

    Weren’t the Kirschenbaum Triplets raised in Belmar? Wasn’t there history of community service as well as public service to our Belmar Community over 50 years give or take by this family?

    Monday, January 16, 2017 at 2:00 pm | Permalink
  20. Not One Word wrote:

    Not one word about the elephant in the room. Robbin Kirk by the summer of 2013 was told to not communicate with taxpayers. She was loaned to Spring Lake Borough. The only person to object publically in four years has been former Mayor Ken Pringle. But I guess that’s OK with you all.

    Wednesday, January 18, 2017 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

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