Lakewood Panel Meet to Reduce School Tax Hike


school-board-lakewoodThe finance committee of the newly reshaped school board in Lakewood, NJ, met last night to figure out how to bring a proposed 10.65-percent tax rate hike down to zero, a board member said.

 “I’m very confident that you will hear that we are very, very close to living up to our campaign promise,” said Carl Fink, a committee member and one of three board candidates elected April 20 on the no-increase platform.

But another newcomer on that ticket, Isaac Zlatkin, said only a minority of the board supports the drastic tax decrease. He mentioned, without going into specifics, multiple cost-cutting proposals that the finance committee has discussed, including one with layoffs.

“But we have to see all the different options,” Zlatkin said Tuesday. “There’s a way to do it without layoffs.”

Veteran board member Meir Grunhut said that while a nearly 11-percent hike was significant, it comes in the face of some $5 million in government aid cuts. He also said more teachers are expected to be retiring than previously expected, which should lower the number of possible layoffs.

At its April 26 meeting, the board selected Leonard Thomas as president and Grunhut as vice president. It also approved, in a 5-4 vote, keeping Michael Inzelbuch as board attorney, despite calls from some board members and private school leaders for him to step down, claiming he used the board as a “rubber stamp.”

“I just felt that in order to get things done (and) start off on the right path, it might be a good idea to make some changes from the ground up,” said board member Jonathan Silver, who voted against Inzelbuch. “Nothing personal.”

Zlatkin said he was surprised when Thomas voted in Inzelbuch’s favor “because of what I have learned about the president – his previous opinions did not exactly go along with the board attorney.”

Yet other board members remained staunch supporters of Inzelbuch.

“He’s done an excellent job, so why would we want to get rid of him?” Grunhut asked.

Inzelbuch did relinquish his position as special education consultant. He did not return calls for comment.

The Township Committee is expected to vote on the revised budget May 13.

{APP/Noam Newscenter}


  1. I didn’t think that matzav would post such garbage any person with a half decent brain in lakewood knows that [deleted by moderator] the only reason why the boe is where it is today!!

  2. The Tea Party rocks!
    The Lakewood Tea Party is now the majority in Lakewood, sweeping in solid conservatives one after the next!

  3. Mayor Langert should be commended for giving the new BOE members the job of living up to their campaign promise. I am convinced that they will be able to do it, hopefully with the help of some of the current BOE members.

    Is the Mayor ready to do the same for Lakewood Township’s budget, by presenting the budget to the challengers of the Lakewood budget to do the trimming.