OCEAN TOWNSHIP: The Ocean Township League of Women Voters urges a "Yes" vote on a ballot question to support the town council proposal to create an "Open Space" funding program to be used when needed to acquire, preserve and improve lands in the township for conservation, recreation and park needs.
The LWV terms the proposal "a minimal tax levy" on an annual basis.
As development and re-development goes on in the township the governing body foresees the need for opportunities for land purchase to remain a "Community of Gracious Living."
A YES means that while specific properties are not identified at this time, the needed financial power to act would be available and reduce or eliminate possible bonding costs, typically a greater burden
Why? Studies have shown that development over the years has reduced the nature of the town, for example, by significantly reducing the "tree canopy", thus changing the State environmental group's classification to "Urban" from suburban. That has financial sourcing cost
At the same time development practices has brought environmental impacts. These need better management and often containment. That costs money, and thus the need for the Open Space program.
The Ocean League of Women Voters asks for a "YES" in the November 7, 2017 election:
"On your ballot, in the Township of Ocean, is the Township of Ocean Question No. 1, which asks "Shall the Township of Ocean establish an Open Space Preservation Program to acquire, preserve and improve lands for open space, conservation, recreation and parkland by annually levying a sum equal to the rate of $.01 per $100.00 of assessed value of real property."
The average property in Ocean is currently assessed at $470,000. The proposed $0.01 levy would mean a tax of $47 a year. So figure $10 annually for each $100,000 and do the arithmetic for your property suggestion. That is "minimal" per the LWV and governing body.
For a more detailed discussion go online to lwvto.org. Viewers will find a talk between the League's Marie Curtis and Mayor Chris Siciliano about the Open Space initiative, how it works, why it's on the ballot, and, of course, as always, traffic.