Bill Dressel, Executive Director

New Jersey League of Municipalities

At our February meeting, Bill Dressel offered an update on initiatives in Trenton that are likely to impact New Jersey municipalities. One such measure to encourage shared municipal services would require approval by voters in effected towns. But if the local electorate votes no, the estimated savings of the declined initiative would be deducted from that town’s state aid. The League, Bill said, opposes the bill. In general, Bill noted that the state has been consistently commandeering local revenues, some $3.4 billion in the last 10 years. The League, he said, was launching a “full court squeeze” on the issue in the coming weeks. Among other initiatives, Bill mentioned a legislative effort to eliminate unemployment insurance for seasonal workers. In later comments from the floor, Mayor Mike Fressola of Manchester pointed out that municipal tax assessors are not required to conduct ongoing revaluations. Some demand extra pay, he said. Since tax appeals are surging, revals should be made part of their official job descriptions.

The mayors elected their 2012 slate of officers at the meeting. They include, from left to right, Mayor Steve Acropolis of Brick, President; Mayor Emeritus Art Petracco of Bay Head, Treasurer; Mayor Mike Fressola of Manchester, Vice President; Mayor Paul Kennedy of Ocean Gate, Secretary; and Mayor Vincent Barella of Point Pleasant Beach, Second Vice President.

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