John Bencivengo Finally Gives the 2008 Budget Deficit a number – $5 Million
After years of obfuscation about what the amount of debt was when he took office in 2008 John Bencivengo, in a Letter to the Editor of the Trentonian, states,
“Who can forget the $5 million dollar deficit depicted in the Annual Financial Statement of Fiscal Year 2007?”
Throughout his 3 ½ years in office, John Bencivengo and Hamilton Township’s all Republican Council have pointed to a variety of differing amounts in defining what the deficit was.
In a Trenton Times article of June 17, 2008 announcing the appointment of John Ricci as the new Hamilton Towsnhip (Mercer) Business Administrator (in place of John Guhl), “
Bencivengo heaped praise on Guhl, saying that the exiting administrator had given the township “a turnaround beyond compare” as he attempted to tackle a $16 million budget deficit during his six months in office.”
John Bencivengo stated in his January 1, 2008 Inaugural Address
“we are confronted by the most serious financial crisis in our history, a budget deficit exceeding ten million dollars.”
The Mayor has finally given Hamilton Township residents a true picture of what the “most serious financial crisis in our history” was that confronted his administration upon taking office in 2008. His comments also put a spotlight on the fact that this $5 million deficit accrued under an all Republican Township Council’s watch.
It was the intentional murkiness of defining what the actual deficit was that allowed John Bencivengo and his Township Council to reorganize the Police Department, lay-off and eliminate 55 township positions, impose an 8 day furplough on all township employees and to raise municipal taxes to historic rates.
Now, this November, Township residents can make an informed decision about the incumbent Mayor’s and all Republican Township Council’s decision to address a $5 million deficit with a permanent $13.3 million tax hike.