City Budget: New bond proposal will provide a win-win situation for our city

New bond proposal will provide a win-win situation for our city
08/03/2003 Hoboken Reporter

Dear Editor:

Soon, I will formally present a rough draft of my 2004 municipal budget to the City Council through a series of workshops. This is the earliest in years that our City Council will have the opportunity to review our spending plan and provide their recommendations.

While I would like to hold off on specifics until I meet with each council member individually, I would like to share some highlights that I strongly believe will be beneficial to our community. As I previously announced, the budget will be significantly lower than last year's and will maintain a stabilized tax rate.

A key element in the plan, the refinancing of our General Obligations Bonds will provide a significant savings to the city by taking advantage of historically reduced interest rates. I will be asking the council to raise the city's debt from $40 million to $55 million to provide three key long-term benefits to our city: the acquisition of open space, a new fire headquarters and an efficient central garage for city vehicles.

Due to the low interest rates on these bonds, the city will significantly reduce our debt obligation roughly in half from $6 million. This bond and the additional debt will provide the catalyst for these projects.

Already, the city has launched citywide open space analysis under the direction of Environmental Services Director Cassandra Wilday. This is a rare opportunity for the city to acquire a significant amount of land for ballfields for our children.

We will be able to retire or renovate our antiquated firehouses with the construction of a central fire headquarters at 8th and Clinton streets on a former mercury site which we are negotiating to be deeded to the city from the federal government. Additionally, we can build a state of the art public works garage at 15th and Madison streets which would allow us to sell the outdated garage on Observer Highway. I strongly believe this new bond proposal will provide a win-win situation for the city by lowering our annual debt payment and providing much needed capital improvements. This budget will provide Hoboken much needed benefits as we look to the future.

Mayor David RobertsĀ 

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