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Ridgewood supervisors stress staffing needs at budget hearings

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Ridgewood supervisors stress staffing needs at budget hearings

APRIL 3, 2014    LAST UPDATED: THURSDAY, APRIL 3, 2014, 3:25 PM
BY BY DARIUS AMOS
STAFF WRITER

Ridgewood Council members and department supervisors continue to search for expense reductions as they work toward balancing the 2014 municipal budget. Their overall goal, which was achieved last year, is to introduce a plan that features a zero percent average tax increase.

Last Thursday, council members reviewed spending proposals from several smaller departments, including several overseen by Chris Rutishauser, head of Ridgewood’s Department of Public Works. Village Clerk Heather Mailander discussed the individual budgets of the departments that she directs.

The engineering division will incur one significant staffing expense, according to Rutishauser, who is hoping to promote a senior engineering aide to the position of principal engineering aide. The proposed personnel move has been requested to fill a vacancy created by a retirement in 2010.

Rutishauser, Ridgewood’s engineer, highlighted a spending decrease, noting that he budgeted for reduced spending on public works education and training, which was a $4,700 item.

– See more at: https://www.northjersey.com/community-news/ridgewood-supervisors-stress-staffing-needs-at-budget-hearings-1.841241#sthash.jNvEGeUU.dpuf

22 thoughts on “Ridgewood supervisors stress staffing needs at budget hearings

  1. A zero tax increase is all well and good, but what about the continuing downhill slide of services that village residents have come to expect?

  2. As they say in the military, anyone could take the hill with more men. But a great officer could do it with his existing troop status.

  3. It’s simple math. The financial condition of the Village is such that new hires are completely out of the question. Unlike the Federal Government that can print money, the Village of Ridgewood can’t. We can all play the blame game of how we got here. Incompetence. Stolen quarters. Nepotism. Unsustainable pension schemes. We can also talk about raising extra revenue. The problem with raising taxes is that Ridgewood competes with other similar jurisdictions, and if you raise taxes here, that raises the incentive to move elsewhere.

    Bottom line, guys. Just like the rest of us who work in the real world. You do more with less. I think I speak for many of us when I say that we all are doing jobs that were not very long ago, being done by more people. It sucks, and we go into work each day with an element of worry wondering if it’s our day to get called into HR.

  4. ok then start with the police , they just put 2 more on. and more in the fire dept. a paid fire dept is big money. and for most of the dept’s they are under staffed as it is. so to # 2 most of the village is doing more with less. but talk about taxes, well the big spender is the b o e. thank you.

  5. We need a building for the Arts Council. Forget about the employes.


  6. Anonymous:

    ok then start with the police , they just put 2 more on. and more in the fire dept. a paid fire dept is big money. and for most of the dept’s they are under staffed as it is. so to # 2 most of the village is doing more with less. but talk about taxes, well the big spender is the b o e. thank you.

    The paid Fire Dept is the main reason we moved here.
    Just look at what happened in Midland park the other nite-the house is ruined and its a simple time factor-If you have a paid department, they arrive ASAP since they are at the fire house (whereas the volunteers have to drive to the station, retrieve the truck, then go to the fire)
    Time is critical. Every minute wasted puts lives at risk (along with property)
    If you want to cut, then get rid of the waste in the Board of Ed.
    Despite our high price police, the municipal portion of our taxes is a bargain. The schools are the ripoff

  7. Give me more of dem DPW workers.

  8. Hire private contractors to do DPW work.
    Eliminate all ongoing pension expenses.
    It is a no brainer.


  9. Anonymous:

    Hire private contractors to do DPW work.
    Eliminate all ongoing pension expenses.
    It is a no brainer.

    Good point.
    Outsourcing is the way to go.
    Low bidder gets the job.
    If they do a lousy job, we don’t use them again.
    Its not rocket science to pick up leaves, sweep streets, fill potholes or plow snow (contractor does a good job).
    We could probably outsource recycling and garbage collection.
    Unfortunately doing all of the above does nothing to address the waste in the board of Ed, that constitutes 75% or so of the average property tax bill. (increasing class sizes to what we had in the 1970’s would eliminate teaching positions, save millions, have virtually no effect on the quality of education…but the big mouthed parents (temporary residents) will make lots of noise about that proposal.

  10. The village had private contractors a good many years ago and that went downhill also.

  11. The quality of work is probably no different between in-house and outside contractors. However the major benefit of using outside contractors is that you don’t have this life-long responsibility if provide unsustainable benefits to the people who do the work.

  12. The benefits provided are quite sustainable they just have to be managed and administrated honestly and properly


  13. Anonymous:

    The benefits provided are quite sustainable they just have to be managed and administrated honestly and properly

    #12, sustainable only if we forever keep raising taxes…. They are outrageous and completely out of line with private sector benefits.


  14. Anonymous:


    Anonymous:

    The paid Fire Dept is the main reason we moved here.
    Just look at what happened in Midland park the other nite-the house is ruined and its a simple time factor-If you have a paid department, they arrive ASAP since they are at the fire house (whereas the volunteers have to drive to the station, retrieve the truck, then go to the fire)
    Time is critical. Every minute wasted puts lives at risk (along with property)
    If you want to cut, then get rid of the waste in the Board of Ed.
    Despite our high price police, the municipal portion of our taxes is a bargain. The schools are the ripoff

    Nice unpaid service announcement for the paid RFD. Obviously you came to work for the dept and don’t have kids in the schools. You’re part of a small minority if you moved here for the paid FD. Why would you pay 66% of the your property taxes for schools if you don’t have kids !

  15. I have lived here my entire life and I support having a paid Fire Dept. If you don’t there is an easy solution to your problem. There are many towns that don’t have a paid Fire Dept. in Bergen County, move to one of them.


  16. Anonymous:

    The benefits provided are quite sustainable they just have to be managed and administrated honestly and properly

    No matter how “honestly” you try and administer them, the concept is unsustainable. It becomes an ever-growing expenditure. They bare a mathematical expanding blob. Economically, it’s very similar to a Ponzi scheme. It is why municipalities and States are facing bankruptcy throughout the entire country.

  17. #16 I disagree we’ve argued this before I won’t waste anymore time on it.


  18. Anonymous:


    Anonymous:


    Anonymous:

    The paid Fire Dept is the main reason we moved here.
    Just look at what happened in Midland park the other nite-the house is ruined and its a simple time factor-If you have a paid department, they arrive ASAP since they are at the fire house (whereas the volunteers have to drive to the station, retrieve the truck, then go to the fire)
    Time is critical. Every minute wasted puts lives at risk (along with property)
    If you want to cut, then get rid of the waste in the Board of Ed.
    Despite our high price police, the municipal portion of our taxes is a bargain. The schools are the ripoff

    Nice unpaid service announcement for the paid RFD. Obviously you came to work for the dept and don’t have kids in the schools. You’re part of a small minority if you moved here for the paid FD. Why would you pay 66% of the your property taxes for schools if you don’t have kids !

    Every town in NJ picks our pockets with respect to property taxes funding the local BOE.
    If you know of a nice place to live in NJ where taxes aren’t an issue. I’d like to hear.
    If I moved to Hoboken I’d need a liver transplant after going to the nice bars every nite so I like to stay in the quiet burbs.
    I grew up here.
    I like the ‘ambience’ of the Village (not the new residents) so I bought here.
    I like the safety of the paid Fire Dept.
    I do not have kids in schools here.
    Be thankful I’m here to subsidize yours!


  19. jjj:

    The village had private contractors a good many years ago and that went downhill also.

    The only private ‘contractor’ I can recall is the private garbage contractor, who went on strike in 1969, which prompted the village to buy its own trucks.
    The ‘wiseguys’ are out of the trash business so today we WILL get competing bids.
    Large public companies such as Waste Management, BFI, and Interstate waste did not exist in 1969.
    In 1969, trash was ‘controlled’ and the wiseguys wouldn’t bid against each other.
    Its a different world today.

  20. #16 talks a lot but fails to offer any proof to their claims. And don’t cite the Financial Advisory Report #16, that document is so full of inaccurate and false information it is useless.

  21. #16: The problem with the “argument” is those that one side bases its argument upon idealism while the other side bases its argument upon mathematics. It’s the same overriding argument that exists in almost every Socialism-Capitalism issue. It’s impossible to dispute an idealist because, in theory, their concept is the way “it should be”. If everyone in the world really did their fair share, was honest, paid their taxes, worked hard, then I’d be in. It would be a fantastic place. Let me know when that world happens, because until it does, I will continue to try and avoid having the lying politicians that represent these idealists from stealing my hard-earned money.

  22. to # 19 you sound like a old cop, hummmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

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