Southern Regional Board of Education Approves 2019-20 Budget

By DAVID BIGGY | May 08, 2019

Stafford Township — Residents within Southern Regional School District borders may be pleased with how things have gone with regard to the district’s budget during recent years, and on May 1 the good news kept on coming.

“Overall, the total budget is 2 percent lower for 2019-20 than it was for this year,” said Business Administrator Steve Terhune a few days after the board of education approved next year’s budget during its annual public hearing. “The state aid was increased by 7.5 percent, and the additional state aid was used to lower the tax levy for 2019-20. The district has retired all of its long-term debt obligations, so the district is debt free.”

As a result, the portion of the tax levy attached to Southern Regional will increase by just 0.47 percent, Terhune said. The district not only kept all student programs in place but also will be adding an advanced placement class for the next school year, as well as the highly anticipated Theater and Theater Dance classes.

Southern’s anticipated expenditures are $60,676,013, while the 2018-19 budget expenditures totaled $62,997,521. Of course, the effect to each town within the district regarding taxation varies. The tax rates are determined by the county and based mostly on the fluctuation of ratables within each town. In some towns, the rate has gone up since last year, while in others it has gone down, according to figures acquired from the county.

For Beach Haven, the 2018-19 tax rate will be 20.5 cents per $100 of assessed value, significantly down from this year’s 26.16-cent rate. For Barnegat Light, next year’s rate is 18.59 cents per $100 of assessed value, down from this year’s 18.97-cent rate. In Harvey Cedars, the rate has decreased from 22.86 cents to 22.7 cents per $100 of assessed value.

For Long Beach Township, the rate is headed upward, from 24.29 cents to 26.41 cents, while Ship Bottom’s rate has decreased from 25.49 cents to 24.03 cents, and Surf City’s rate has gone down a lot, from 25.37 cents to 20.61 cents. Within Stafford Township, next year’s rate is 22.77 cents, significantly down from this year’s 24.99-cent rate.

To see a user-friendly budget for the 2019-20 school year, visit

— David Biggy

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