Paterson council approves Sayegh’s $285 million budget with 2-percent tax increase | Paterson Times

Paterson council approves Sayegh’s $285 million budget with 2-percent tax increase


The City Council approved mayor Andre Sayegh’s $285 million budget that contains a 2-percent property tax increase.

Council members adopted the budget in an 8-1 vote following a public hearing late Tuesday night. Members of the governing body spent less than 20 minutes discussing the budget.

“We raise taxes understanding it’s part of the [memorandum of understanding] MOU,” said council president Maritza Davila. The state government requires the city to raise taxes in order to receive financial assistance. In the fiscal 2019 budget, the state government is providing $33 million in transitional aid.

Sayegh administration officials grappled with a $45 million budget deficit. Municipal officials said the deficit was driven by a one-time surplus of more than $8 million that was used to plug last year’s budget.

There was also increase in government expenses.

At one point, Sayegh wanted to layoff hundreds of employees to balance the budget, but later backed off, announcing his staff found cuts to save jobs.

“I can see us becoming less dependent on transitional aid,” remarked Ruby Cotton, 4th Ward councilwoman, during the vote.

Sayegh’s administration has increased reliance on state aid. State aid went from $25 to $33 million.

“I’m hoping the state would give our fair share of transitional aid. Our surrounding towns are contributing to our deficit,” said William McKoy, 3rd Ward councilman, referring to the out-of-town drug addicts and vagrants that have taken over parts of Broadway. “We’re the social service agency for the county.”

Council members Michael Jackson, Cotton, Luis Velez, Al Abdelaziz, Flavio Rivera, McKoy, Lilisa Mimms, and Davila voted in favor of the budget while Shahin Khalique voted against.

Khalique complained homeowners are being forced to pay more taxes for less services.

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  • MarquinhoGaucho

    They should Nelly Poo from the parking authority, she is the worst, you can get a junior accountant much cheaper.

    • bigron

      What does this have to do with the budget? Paterson Parking is separate from City of Paterson. Different budgets.

      Quit drinking that nasty Schafer trib juice McEntee been serving you.

      • MarquinhoGaucho

        She makes 54K and is a triple dipper to the pension, the kind of corrupt self serving politician NJ can do without. I dont need anyone to influence me on something that is self evident

        • Miss jamaica

          I totally agree I would like to know how she is able to do all these jobs effectively. I also see some conflict there .
          This is my opinion.

  • Miss jamaica

    I totally agree with the council man that voted no , we are definitely getting less service. I would really like the councils to start a real conversation about quality of life.
    Bring back the people that genuinely care about this city.
    We are transitional city we will alway need additional resources unfortunately.