Freehold– Freehold Director Thomas A. Arnone called on his colleagues to reverse $4.9 million County property tax increase, 1.5%, imposed last year, now that Monmouth County is no longer subsidizing the nursing homes that had cost Monmouth taxpayers almost $50 million over the last ten years.
Speaking at the annual reorganization of the County government on Wednesday afternoon, Arnone, who was elected as Director for 2016 by his fellow freeholders, announced that the auction of the nursing homes was completed this week and generated $32.4 million, $12.4 million more than expected. Arnone said that as a result of no longer having to carry the nursing homes, that taxes should be reduced back to the level that the board had held steady from 2008 through 2014. The Director told MoreMonmouthMusings that he would urge the Board to use the $32.4 million proceeds of the sale to reduce the County’s AAA rated debt.
In addition to lowering taxes and reducing debt, Arnone advocating boosting the the Monmouth economy by requiring that more local laborers be employed in County funded projects. He called for lowering the threshold of projects that would trigger Project Labor Agreements with Monmouth located trade unions. Currently, projects valued at $5 million or more are subject to Project Labor Agreements. Arnone wants to threshold lowered to $3 million in order to ensure that more Monmouth County tax dollars remain in Monmouth County households.
Monmouth County Clerk Christine Giodano Hanlon was sworn into her own full five year term as Clerk by Judge Joseph W. Oxley. Hanlon was nominated by Governor Chris Christine and unanimously confirmed by the State Senate to replace former Clerk M. Claire French upon her retirement last year. She was elected to her own term last November.
Monmouth County Surrogate Rosemarie Peters administered the Oath of Office to Freeholder John P. Curley who was elected to his third term last November.