By Paul Milo
Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo Friday introduced a $749 million county budget Friday calling for a 1.5 percent increase in the tax levy, a spending plan
“Introducing our budget in January provides our department and division directors and constitutional officers with a solid framework to operate throughout the year and gives our municipal partners and constituents a clear snapshot of what to expect from the county,” DiVincenzo said in a statement.
The proposed budget includes special reserve funds for payroll, snow removal and other expenses which DiVincenzo said will help “spread costs over several years.”
It also calls for $4 million out of a $44 million in reserve funds to be used as revenue in 2014. Other sources of revenue include $40 million for housing federal inmates as well as inmates from Gloucester County at the Essex County jail; $14 million from the state of New Jersey for treating patients to the county psychiatric treatment facility in Cedar Grove; and about $11 million from in revenue from golf courses, the Turtle Back Zoo and other county park facilities.The budget will be presented to the county Board of Chosen Freeholders for review.