the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, While the tone deaf Ridgewood School Board has continued to reject the idea , the Village Council is considering moving the Board of Education election back to April so that residents once again have a say on the school budget process.
According to local resident Steve Kim , “The cost of the budget vote is less than $2 per resident per year. You can maybe buy a cheeseburger at McD for that price. Turnout (measured by votes cast) has not been any better in November vs April.April gives us the budget vote. The poll is the most straightforward and democratic way for the residents to express their views. It’s a good way to have an added control, a sanity check, on the $110,000,000+ budget.”
The Village Council discussed moving the election in order to give people a chance to vote on how their tax dollars are spent.”It is time we talked about it,” , said Mayor Ramon Hache. The Ridgewood Council intends to exercise its authority to move the Ridgewood Board of Education elections back to April, restoring the public vote on the school budget. Mark your calendar for Village Council meeting July 18.
The Mayor said the matter would be discussed at the Village Council’s next meeting Wednesday. Members of the Board of Education have been invited to attend the meeting Wednesday.
The Ridgewood Board of Education approved a massive $110 million budget for the 2018-19 school year, with a 4.3% increase including and nearly $95 million local tax levy.
Under a state law that went into effect in 2012, a local board of education or municipal governing body could decide to move their municipality’s school board election from April to November. Doing so meant residents lost the ability to approve their school district’s budget for that coming year as long as the budget remains until the state-mandated 2 percent increase cap.