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These Guys Know How to Save Money

http://www.nj.com/somerset/index.ssf/2014/02/bridgewater_eyes_nearly_5m_in_savings_with_transition_t...

Paul J. DiBartolo February 23, 2014 at 10:22 AM
Why is it that so-called "savings" are always based on spending now for savings Later; in this case, over the course of 10 years? So, spend $2-million now to save $4.7-million over 10 years. The $2-million is required to buy new equipment now to be able to enter into the agreement that will save $4.7-million later. The question arises in my mind as to whether there will be any other expenditures required over those 10 years. That's what we are never told. When such expenditures do arise, which I'm sure they will, such expenditures will definitely erode the so-called original "savings." Here's another thing: "Bridgewater will not be charged by the county for the dispatch services..." So how long do we expect these services will be free? Somebody has to pay for the service. This kind of hocus-pocus just doesn't hold water for me. How about it, John, what are your thoughts?
John Reynolds February 23, 2014 at 10:41 AM
My thoughts are that Gloucester Township and Cherry Hill are the only towns in Camden County not going shared service with their dispatching. Cherry Hill has twice the per-capita income of Gloucester Township. On a somewhat related matter, I've been checking real estate sales recently. I found similar 3 BR townhouses listed in Gloucester Township and Cherry Hill, going for around $200,000, both paying about $6500 in tax. Cherry Hill's HOA fees were $180 a month more than Gloucester Township's, which comes to $2160 a year more. For $2160 a year more you can send your kids to Cherry Hill East, one of the best high schools in South Jersey. Or you can stay here and send your kids to Highland or Timber Creek.
Schu February 23, 2014 at 12:23 PM
As I've said for the last 5 years, Gloucester Township is a toxic community.
Pete Heinbaugh February 23, 2014 at 02:00 PM
Any initiative that entails "spend money to save money" is tricky and difficult. Such an initiative requires precise planning and execution. And then, after its in places, it needs to be monitored and managed. A high percentage of such initiatives undertaken by well-run private sector entities fail. Success or failure very often comes down to the competence of the personnel involved. If someone holds a government managerial position or a government contract because one is a friend or patron, rather than the most competent; then this type of initiative stands almost no chance to succeed.
John Reynolds February 23, 2014 at 06:29 PM
I'm no accountant, but according to the 2013 Gloucester Township municipal budget, Police Communications consumes 825K of the 13.8M Police budget, and out of the 9.2M that the township is on the hook for Police Compensated Absence Leave (unused sick and vacation time), 281K is for the "Dispatchers Union."
Paul J. DiBartolo February 23, 2014 at 06:54 PM
The real test is how efficient this shifting of service from Bridgewater to the county will be. If the service provided by the county fails to meet the current level of service provided by Bridgewater, how does all that affect talk about savings? John, I get your point about GT, but if my best option was to jump to Cherry Hill, I'd keep looking.

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