Brick Township Council President John Ducey feels the issue of the Mayor's salary is in fact a done deal, and it's time to move on to more pressing issues like the budget.

The $82million spending plan recently presented to the governing body by Mayor Steve Acropolis has the board trying to find solutions to make up shortfalls. His proposal calls for dissolving the Department of Public Works and laying off 77 employees. When it comes to state aid this year, Brick is getting the same amount as last - a little over five million. It's still a reduction from a few years back when the township was getting a little over seven.

Ducey says "we are trying to avoid the layoffs at all costs. We are going through the budget line by line, item by item and are asking each department to present their expenditures so we can see what can be cut."

According to Ducey, the financial aspect isn't the only concern. There's the idea of neighbors placing neighbors out of jobs - unaccountable on any ledger sheet. Most of the employees, says Ducey, live in town. Ducey adds "these are services people want and need. This isn't something to be messed around with. We will do whatever we can."

In terms of the mayor's salary ordinance, Mayor's who work 34-hours a week or less to collect a $52,000 annual salary. Elected Mayors with full-time jobs elsewhere will be compensated $15,000 a year. Acropolis is against the plan but is opting to take a dollar for the remainder of his term.