Home Shamong News A Year of Optimism in Shamong

A Year of Optimism in Shamong

The year of 2018 will bring improvements and a feeling of community to Shamong

According to Mayor Timothy Gimbel, 2018 will be the year of cautious optimism for Shamong.

“Things are changing with the tax bill that was just voted on, and with a new Democratic governor for our state, we don’t know how it will affect either as a state or as a town, but we are going to be optimistic” Gimbel said.

Township committee plans to continue its trend of fiscal responsibility and spend money where it is needed.

“We, as a committee, try to run the town as a business. We spend only when necessary,” Gimbel said.

One such instance is providing the Department of Public Works with new snow removal equipment to make the streets safer for residents. In addition, $200,000 has been earmarked to be put toward the 10-year road improvement plan.

This year will also bring the construction of the Pinelands Memorial Cemetery. The project has been in the works for several years. When ground will be broken has not yet been stated, but the project has been funded and approved.

In regard to the residents, Gimbel and the township committee find themselves asking, “How can we make Shamong a better place to raise a family?”

Their answer is to try to get the committee and the school board more involved with one another.

“Superintendent Christine Vespe and her team do a great job of preparing our children for the future. We would like to work on what we can do to help improve that overall family experience,” Gimbel said.

The committee also wants to plan more community activities, such as the Shamong Lighting Contest that was held for the first time in 2017. It is the committee’s hope that things like this will help bring people closer and get everyone more involved.

“Things like this are a big part of what makes our little town a great place to live and raise a family,” Gimbel stated.

Shamong school district

The 2017–2018 school year holds no real program changes, as the budgets adopted remain relatively unchanged from the previous year’s budgets.

The $4.9 million referendum, meant to cover the costs of HVAC replacement, parking lot reconstruction, generator replacement and classroom door access controls in Shamong’s K-8 schools, was defeated on Sept 26, so the Shamong taxpayer will go from paying approximately $385 a year to $64 toward the school district’s debt service. Without the referendum, the school district plans to pay back $691,726 of its debt by the end of 2018.

“The 2018–19 budget is currently being developed and will be evaluated and adjusted to allow for critical projects to be completed,” Vespe said.

PARCC state-mandated testing will be done in April and May of this year for grades three through eight at all schools in the Shamong district.

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