May 17, 2013
Last evening the City Council adopted the City’s 2013 operating budget. The budget is sound and fair to the taxpayers. It maintains the same level of services that our residents, property owners and visitors expect and enjoy. It’s a responsible plan for this year, and positions us nicely for the coming years.
The Administration has taken the same approach with this budget that we have during my term as Mayor. We’re done with the days where Council is provided a budget that everyone knows can be whittled down some to what is actually needed.
That’s not to say that Council shouldn’t challenge us and do everything they can to understand what can be a complex document. They have done that publicly at the budget workshops and regular Council Meetings, and privately in discussions with various members of the administration and our auditor.
You may have noticed a large ad placed this week by Fairness in Taxes. The number of full time employees indicated in the ad is from a worksheet provided to Council in February and is not accurate compared to the adopted budget.
In regards to part-time employees, City Council is well aware that anytime there is a vacancy we consider all alternatives, as have previous Administrations. We make great use of part-time and seasonal personnel in a variety of areas where and when appropriate. With the cooperation of CWA 1078, who graciously agreed to waive their contract provision capping the number of hours part-time team members can work, we made even greater use of part-time employees last year in our response to Hurricane Sandy. To make a blanket statement we should never hire another full-time employee other than a department head is ridiculous.
Finally, the ad indicates that we refinanced short term debt. Actually we did not refinance anything, we went to permanent financing of some debt. We did receive a premium from the financial institution involved of over $900,000. With the guidance of our financial professionals, we have recommended applying these funds over this year’s and next year’s budget. One thing that is accurate is we could ignore this recommendation and “buy down” this year’s tax rate by using all $900,000 now. We could do the same thing by using more of our fund balance in this year’s budget. Neither action would be a wise move. We are not looking at just one year but rather two and three years out and that’s the responsible thing to do.
I can assure you we continue to consider ways to operate more efficiently in every area of the City. The significant departmental reorganization, also approved last night, is testament to that objective. Additionally, the complete review of our public safety services I announced a few weeks ago is ongoing. Both Chiefs and their leadership teams have provided me with a great deal of information. The Business Administrator and I, in consultation with the Council President and Vice President, are finalizing what areas of our public safety operations we want to have further dialog on. Again, we remain open to any changes that don’t jeopardize public safety.
City Council gave careful consideration to this year’s budget. I appreciate their diligence and input. Most of all, I appreciate their willingness to work together with my Administration toward common objectives.
Have a great weekend.
Jay A. Gillian
Welcome to The City of Ocean City, New Jersey!
Ocean City is a town rich in history and a deep sense of community. Families have been vacationing in Ocean City for generations and many have made Ocean City their year round home.
Our residents enjoy award winning schools, world-class recreation facilities and outstanding municipal services from all City Departments including Police and Fire. Residents participate in activities for every age and interest including the cultural arts, music and theatre as well as sports and recreation programs available at our many parks, playgrounds and City facilities.
The City also maintains and operates a Municipal Airport, twelve-hole golf course, Aquatic and Fitness Center as well as the famed Ocean City Pops Orchestra.
Ocean City is also host to over 200 family friendly special events held year round. Many of our events are popular family traditions including the Night in Venice Boat Parade in July, our exciting Indian Summer Weekend in October featuring the mile long block party and fireworks, and our family friendly New Year’s Eve Celebration, First Night.
If you are vacationing in Ocean City, I know you’ll enjoy our seven miles of beautiful beaches and exciting boardwalk lined with shops, restaurants and amusements. And be sure to visit our unique and charming downtown shops and restaurants located in the heart of town on Asbury Avenue.
I am truly proud to serve as Mayor for this great community and hope you and your family enjoy your time in America’s Greatest Family Resort.
Jay Gillian, Mayor
February 8, 2013- FEMA/ADVISORY BASE FLOOD ELEVATION MAPS
|November 2, 2012 - Hurricane Sandy READ ONLINE|
|October 22, 2012 - Master Plan READ ONLINE|
October 22, 2012 - Letter from Mayor Gillian to Merion Park Residents -