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Introduction: 

The Center for Government Services at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, offers courses in tax collection administration that are designed to train municipal tax collectors in the duties and responsibilities of their office. Other municipal officials and interested citizens are invited to enroll in the courses provided the prerequisites are satisfied and space is available.

Experienced members of the field comprise the instructional staff; all are state certified tax collectors. Courses are scheduled in both the fall and spring semesters at locations throughout the state. Times and locations are announced in advance of each semester.

Principles of Municipal Tax Collection I, II and III are required in all cases for the designation of Certified Tax Collector (see N.J.S.A. 40A:9-145 et seq.). Required texts are provided for the three mandatory courses, including:

  • Principles of Municipal Tax Collection I  
  • Principles of Municipal Tax Collection II  
  • Principles of Municipal Tax Collection III  

Additional copies of current Tax Collection manuals are available for purchase. For an order form, call 732-932-3640, ext. 628, or visit the Publications page.

Cooperating Organizations

Course Descriptions

 

Principles of Municipal Tax Collection I

36 hours.
Text: Principles of Municipal Tax Collection I (2008)
This introductory course is designed as an introduction to municipal tax collection, and the basic duties and responsibilities of the municipal tax collector.
Major areas of instruction include the statutory basis and institutional framework for local government in New Jersey, duties of the assessor and county tax board, assessments for improvements, tax searches, and searches for improvements. The tax collector's duties are covered with regard to billing, cashiering, and reports. The office and duties of the municipal treasurer, treasurer of school monies, and utility collector also are discussed. The course includes hands-on calculations. A review and final exam are given. Students should bring a 12-digit calculator beginning on the first day of class.

Principles of Municipal Tax Collection II: Tax Sales

36 hours.
Prerequisite: Principles of Municipal Tax Collection I
Text: Principles of Municipal Tax Collection II (2011)
This second course in the sequence focuses on the advanced aspects of enforcement. The areas of enforcement that are covered in detail are general provisions, power of tax sale, preparation, mechanics, and certificate of sale. Redemptions, redemptions by installments, priorities of liens, bankruptcy, foreclosure, in personam, and In Rem are also discussed in depth. Other topics presented are assignment of tax sale certificates, and cancellation and redemption of tax sale certificates. The course includes hands-on calculations. A review and final exam are given. Students should bring a 12-digit calculator beginning on the first day of class.

Principles of Municipal Tax Collection III: Tax Office Operations 

36 hours.
Prerequisite: Tax Collection I and II
Text: Principles of Municipal Tax Collection III (2013)
This third course in the sequence covers the tax appeal process (both County Board and State Tax Court), a detailed review of estimated and final tax billing (including state fiscal year), tax overbills, requirements and preparation of senior citizen and veterans deduction reporting, and calculation of percentages of tax collections. The course also includes instruction on the areas of records management, and the operations and security of the tax office; mortgage escrow; and credit card acceptance. The course includes hands-on calculations. A review and final examination are given. Students should bring a 12-digit calculator beginning on the first day of class.

Tax Collection Review Course 

18 hours.
This program is a review of the courses in New Jersey Principles of Municipal Tax Collection, and is offered prior to the State Certified Tax Collector (CTC) examination. This class is open only to those persons who have satisfactorily completed Principles of Municipal Tax Collection I, II, and III. This course does not include a review of the CTC exam questions, and it is not required to take the state exam. Students should bring to class all three current manuals and a 12-digit calculator.

Spring Conference for Tax Collectors and Treasurers

This program is sponsored by the Tax Collectors and Treasurers Association of New Jersey. It is offered in the spring and is designed to meet the continuing education needs of tax collectors, treasurers, and other public officials concerned with the responsibilities of the tax collection office. A separate announcement will be mailed in the spring by the Tax Collectors and Treasurers Association of New Jersey.

Continuing Education Information

Certificates are awarded for the satisfactory completion of each program. This is defined as attendance at 80 percent of the class hours, a passing grade of 80, and full payment of all fees.

Certification and State Exam

No persons shall be appointed or reappointed as a tax collector unless they hold a Tax Collector Certificate pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:9-145.7. Examinations for Certified Tax Collector are given periodically by the Division of Local Government Services of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs.

For more information about experience or other qualifications for attaining certification, or about the State Tax Collection Certification Exam, visit http://www.state.nj.us/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/certification.html, or call the Certification Unit at 609-633-6349.

Recertification

All persons holding the CTC designation in the State of New Jersey are required to obtain 15 contact hours of continuing education during a two-year period. For further information and opportunities, visit the websites of the Certification Unit of the NJ Department of Community Affairs or the Municipal Clerks’ Association of New Jersey.

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    Maria Chigirovich
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    732-932-3640, ext. 648
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    Introduction: 

    To place an order for materials, download one of the files below.

    Standard Order Form (PDF)

     

     

    New Jersey Legislative District Data Book is now ONLINE!!

    Visit njdatabook.rutgers.edu

     

     

    For other CGS publications and reports, listed alphabetically:

        RESEARCH PAPERS

        (click here for order form)

    Municipal Charter Revision in New Jersey: An Inventory of Change, 1950-2015 - click here for paper

    The purpose of this publication is to provide an inventory of all of the actions taken locally under the provisions of the Optional Municipal Charter Law of 1950 (OMCL) to change the organization of New Jersey municipal governments. While over 350 actions have been identified and catalogued, the Inventory is not complete. Users are invited to forward additional information on actions under the OMCL to the author, so that the Inventory can be made more comprehensive. Information on recent actions is particularly desirable.

    Cooperative Purchasing in New Jersey: A Case Study on Regionalization (2000)--$3.00

    Cooperative purchasing was initiated in New Jersey with the passage of legislation in 1979. The types of cooperative purchasing agreements include Cooperative Pricing, Commodity Resale and Joint Purchasing. These agreements result in lower prices for products purchased and less resources required to conduct bidding processes. In New Jersey, 71% of municipalities, 75% of school districts, and 81% of counties participate in cooperative purchasing agreements. This study analyzes cooperative purchasing systems and offers several recommendations.

    Cost Impact of School District Creation and Consolidation in New Jersey (1995)--$3.00

    This paper evaluates the expenditure experience of 43 groups of school districts which, between 1955 and 1982, joined to created new limited purpose regional high school districts and six groups of school districts which consolidated into all-purpose K-12 regional districts during the same period. The paper suggests the cost savings which might be achieved through the consolidation of limited purpose regional districts into all-purpose districts. (The paper's author is Dr. Ernest C. Reock, Jr., Professor Emeritus at Rutgers.)

    Inventory of Municipal Forms of Government in New Jersey---$7.00

    The inventory shows for each New Jersey municipality the type, county, 2000 estimated population, area, density, form of government, number of elected officials, elections from wards or at-large, governing body terms of office, whether the elections are partisan or nonpartisan, and whether the voters have the power of initiative or referendum. Municipal data are presented in two ways: alphabetically by county and by population size within each form of government.

    Property Tax Determinants:  New Research

    In his paper, “Determinants of Property Tax Burden in New Jersey – 2013,” Dr. Ernest Reock Jr. offers a methodology for identifying the causes of the relative tax burden in cities and towns – causes that often reach beyond municipal and school expenditures to county and state levels of taxation and funding. He specifically looks at 2013 comparison to 2008 to identify statewide changes, such as declining property values, which had a profound impact on property tax burdens across New Jersey. Download the research in PDF format here or request a hard copy.

    Redistricting New Jersey after the Census of 2010 (2008)--$5.00

    This occasional paper describes the procedures to be used and forecasts in general terms the probable changes which will be made after the Census of 2010 in Congressional districts, state Legislative districts, county freeholder districts, municipal wards, regional school board membership, and local election districts.

    State Aid for Schools in New Jersey: 1976-1996 (1996)--$20.00

    This publication describes the formulas which have been used over the past two decades for distributing state aid; traces the implementation of the various formulas which have been used; shows the trends of state aid expenditures over the period and, when possible, provides some explanation for the patterns observed; and places state aid for schools in a broader fiscal context.

     

        AVAILABLE CGS PUBLICATIONS BY PROGRAM AREA

     

    FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT - click here for order form

     

    County Fiscal Operations (2010) ---$56.00

    The manual reviews the general structure of government in New Jersey; state statutes governing the county budget process, content and format; trust funds and grant accounting; annual debt statements and supplemental debt statements; and local public contracting laws.    

    Maintaining Municipal General Ledgers (2013)--$30.00

    This publication is designed to function as a “do-it-yourself” manual for maintaining a municipal general ledger and focuses on the non-cash closing entries required at or around year end.  It covers the Current Fund, Grant Fund, Trust Fund and General Capital Fund.  The manual features journal entry checklists for each fund, explanations for each journal entry and sample source documents Illustrating where to obtain the information necessary to make each journal entry.  Sample reports provided.

    Municipal Budget Process (2012) ---$33.00

    This manual provides a broad background of local government budgeting as it is practiced in New Jersey and deals with a document that is a plan of action, expressed in financial terms. Legal requirements concerning the adoption and executing of the official budget are examined, as well as the roles of various municipal officials through the budget circle.                                   

    Municipal Capital and Trust Fund Accounting (1997) ---$43.00

    The supplemental course manual provides accounting processes and problems that are worked on during class under the instructor's supervision. Principles of assessment, trust fund accounting, general capital fund accounting, and theory of capital budgeting are also covered.        

    Municipal Current Fund Accounting (2013) ---$38.00

    This manual focuses on fund accounting in New Jersey. It is designed as a course supplement for those who have responsibility for local government finance. The manual introduces basic fund accounting terminology and work sheet preparation and proceeds to the application of the principles and theories for the complete municipal accounting cycle.     

    Municipal Finance Administration in New Jersey (2016) ---$35.00

    This manual introduces the field of municipal finance and is designed to provide a foundation for a better understanding of New Jersey local government fiscal affairs.  Major topics covered include  the institutional framework of local government in New Jersey, the state’s role in supervision and  assistance, property tax administration and assessment administration, municipal caps, municipal budgeting, budget execution, municipal purchasing, treasury management, and the flexible chart of accounts.                    

    Municipal Utility Fund Accounting (1999) ---$30.00

    The supplemental course manual provides the materials for class-work on utility fund accounting processes and problems under the instructor's supervision. The topics include purpose and scope of utility funds, the utility operating fund, theory of capital budgeting, the utility capital fund, and the utility assessment fund.                                                                                                                                    

    Principles of Financial Management (2010) ---$37.00

    The supplemental course manual provides the basis for emphases on sound financial management practices for finance directors, treasurers, and registered municipal accountants. Elements of financial organization, reporting, planning, debt, pension, investment, insurance administration, and collective bargaining are reviewed through the contained case studies.                             

    Preparation of Annual Financial Statements (2011) ---$43.00

    This supplemental course manual is designed to provide a working document to further the skills necessary to complete an annual financial statement. The material is built around the actual preparation of an annual financial statement. 

     

    MUNICIPAL CLERKS - click here for order form

     

    New Jersey Municipal Clerks Study Guide (Third Edition, 2010)

    Municipal Clerks Study Guide, includes Supplements 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, & 7 – Text & Binder---$133.00

    Municipal Clerks Study Guide, includes Supplements 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, & 7 – Text Only---$123.00

    Municipal Clerks Supplement No. 3 Only (2013) ---$37.00

    Municipal Clerks Supplement No. 4 Only (2014) ---$47.00

    Municipal Clerks Supplement No. 5 Only (2015) ---$35.00

    Municipal Clerks Supplement No. 6 (2016) ---$33.00 

    Municipal Clerks Supplement No. 7 (10/2016) ---$46.00

     

    PLANNING AND ZONING - click here for order form

     

    Land Use Administration for New Jersey Municipalities (2007) ---$25.00

    This 138 page manual, developed by the Center for Government Services and the New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators, covers the development applications, review process, and financial practices for land use offices, public meeting protocol, and administrative actions following board decisions, among other topics.  Supplementing its seven chapters are extensive appendices containing selected state laws, state guidance documents, and model forms and checklists that municipalities can adapt.

    Planning and Zoning in New Jersey (2013) ---$33.00

    This manual offers an overview of New Jersey’s planning system, checklists for subdivision and site plan reviews, tips on site visits and managing public meetings, and analyses of variance criteria. It also gives guidance on master plan updates and board governance, summaries of state ethics and open public meetings laws, and an introduction to smart growth principles and redevelopment.

    Zoning Administration & Enforcement in New Jersey (2014) ---$33.00

    This manual provides insight on the technical knowledge and skills necessary for municipal zoning officials to effectively interpret and enforce zoning ordinances.  Emphasis is placed on the practical aspects of the job, including on-site inspections, compliance options, and administrative procedures.

     

    PUBLIC PURCHASING - click here for order form

     

    Green Product Purchasing (2015)--$15.00

    This manual introduces the long-term benefits of Green Purchasing and addresses how it can reduce overall costs and improve the workplace environment; strengthen markets for recyclable materials; promote the use of less toxic products to protect the health and safety of workers while minimizing potentially harmful emissions to air and water; and minimize local unit energy costs by promoting the purchase of energy-conserving appliances, equipment, and fixtures.     

    Principles of Public Purchasing 1 (2015) ---$41.00

    As an introduction to public purchasing, this manual introduces sound practices and principles. It covers the application of appropriate guidelines, techniques and requirements for establishing a purchasing agency, the operational procedure within the agency, and the basis for a purchase order-encumbrance procedure.  Other topics include the basic legal principles of the public purchasing function, a discussion of intergovernmental cooperative purchasing, centralized purchasing, and specification writing.

    Principles of Public Purchasing 2 (2014) ---$34.00

    This manual emphasizes advanced information, ideas, and techniques for experienced public purchasing personnel.  Some of the topics covered include the Uniform Commercial Code, the marketplace, transportation and distribution.  It also reviews the Local Public Contracts Law and Statutory applications in judicial decisions, the antitrust law, and ethical issues.

    Principles of Public Purchasing 3---$37.00

    This manual reviews the competitive contracting process in public purchasing, with emphasis on Bid specifications and Request for Proposals as well as instructions to bidders and statutory requirements.  It also discusses current procurement subjects in the purchasing field.

     

    TAX COLLECTION - click here for order form

     

    Principles of Municipal Tax Collection I (2015) ---$40.00

    This text provides an introduction to the primary and secondary duties of the municipal tax collector and an overview of general taxation law.  This publication has been written for the Center for Government Services of Rutgers University by Alice Anne Paretti, CTC/CFO/CTA.  It is used as the basic text in Principles of Municipal Tax Collection I, which is one of three courses required to sit for the State Certification Exam.

    Principles of Municipal Tax Collection II (2013) ---$37.00

    This text provides the reader with an understanding in narrative form, of New Jersey’s Tax Sale Laws and the tax sale process.  It is used as the basic text in Principles of Municipal Tax Collection II, which is one of three courses required to sit for the State Certification Exam.  This manual contains the text of New Jersey statutes pertaining to the tax sale process.

    Principles of Municipal Tax Collection III (2015) ---$36.00

    This text is the fourth edition and is intended to provide the reader with a comprehensive overview of Tax Office operations.  Some topics include: security of the tax office, off procedures, records management, interest on delinquencies, calculations, tax appeal refunds, reports, ethics and audit reports.

     

     

    Property Tax Determinants: New Research

    In his paper, "Determinants of Property Tax Burden in New Jersey - 2013," Dr. Ernest C. Reock, Jr. offers a methodology for identifying the causes of the relative tax burden in cities and towns - causes that often reach beyond municipal and school expenditures to county and state levels of taxation and funding. He specifically looks at 2013 in comparison to 2008 to identify statewide changes, such as declining property values, which had a profound impact on property tax burdens across New Jersey.

    Download the research in PDF format here or request a hard copy.

    Municipal Charter Studies

    The Center for Government Services provides assistance to municipal charter study commissions, municipal officials, and citizen groups considering a change in their form of municipal government. Staff members of the Center will respond to telephone or e-mail inquiries and, within the limits of available time, will meet with local officials and organizations. For further information, call 732-932-3640, extensions 632 or 633. Documents available from the Center may be accessed below.

     

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    Property Tax Determinants: New Research

    In his paper, "Determinants of Property Tax Burden in New Jersey - 2008," Dr. Ernest C. Reock, Jr. offers a methodology for identifying the causes of the relative tax burden in cities and towns - causes that often reach beyond municipal and school expenditures to county and state levels of taxation and funding. He specifically looks at 2008 in comparison to 2004 to identify statewide changes, such as declining property values, which had a profound impact on property tax burdens across New Jersey.

    Download the research in PDF format here.

    Municipal Charter Studies

    The Center for Government Services provides assistance to municipal charter study commissions, municipal officials, and citizen groups considering a change in their form of municipal government. Staff members of the Center will respond to telephone or e-mail inquiries and, within the limits of available time, will meet with local officials and organizations. For further information, call 732-932-3640, extensions 632 or 633. Documents available from the Center may be accessed below.

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    Introduction: 

    Continuing education programs organized by the Center increase the technical competence of state and local government personnel in New Jersey while fostering an attitude of professionalism among public sector officials and employees.

    More than 600 courses and seminars are offered each year, with annual enrollments of more than 20,000 participants. These programs are generally taught by state and local government professionals and other experts who receive instructor training through the Center. Most classes are run throughout the state on an open-enrollment basis. However, on-site programs can be developed for individual local governments upon request. For an overview of the Program areas, please click on the links below.

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    The Center for Government Services (CGS) has been providing timely and relevant training for New Jersey state and local officials for over 60 years. The Center was established in 1991 from the consolidation of the Bureau of Government Research (created in 1950) and the Department of Government Services.

    Our mission is to improve the knowledge, competency, and professionalism of state and local government officials and employees. We have trained thousands of individuals in a variety of fields including municipal finance, housing inspection and code enforcement, education facilities management, public purchasing, planning and zoning and municipal administration to name a few. The Center has been frequently designated by the New Jersey Legislature to offer state-mandated training for municipal officials, and as a result, is often called upon to certify that participants in its programs have demonstrated the competence and skills to perform their duties and responsibilities in a professional manner that is appropriate and consistent with standards for high quality public services.

    With our partners, the Center for Executive Leadership in Government (CELG) we train more than 8,000 individuals each year through 22 separate programs that include more than 750 individual courses, seminars, and conferences. Courses are held throughout the state during the year at locations convenient to our students. They are taught by highly trained practicing professionals whose expertise reflects both theoretical and practical considerations.

    We invite you to learn more about our programs and services by contacting one of our staff. It is our honor to serve the state and municipal employees of New Jersey.

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    Introduction: 

    The Center for Government Services at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, offers this series of courses for those interested in increasing their knowledge of public purchasing, as well as public officials desiring the State of New Jersey's Qualified Purchasing Agent certification, and/or the Rutgers University Registered Public Purchasing Official (RPPO) or the Registered Public Purchasing Specialist (RPPS) certificate.

    Course Descriptions

     

    Principles of Public Purchasing 1

    30 hours
    Prerequisite: None
    This introduction to public purchasing acquaints  purchasing agents and other public officials responsible for purchasing with sound principles and practices. It covers the application of appropriate guidelines, techniques, and requirements for establishing a purchasing agency, and the basis to encumbering. Other topics include a discussion of intergovernmental cooperative purchasing, centralized purchasing, specification writing, the public contracts law, and related legislation. It also covers public procurement laws and corresponding rules and regulations. A final exam is given.

    Principles of Public Purchasing 2

    30 hours
    Prerequisite: Principles of Public Purchasing 1
    This course emphasizes advanced information, ideas, and techniques for experienced public purchasing personnel. Topics covered include the Uniform Commercial Code, the Local Public Contracts Law and statutory applications in judicial decisions, the antitrust law, and ethical issues. A final exam is given.

    Principles of Public Purchasing 3

    30 hours
    Prerequisite: Principles of Public Purchasing 2
    This course covers the competitive contracting process in public purchasing, with emphasis on bid specifications and Request for Proposals. It also discusses current procurement subjects in the purchasing field. Students are expected to complete class exercises and contribute to current issues discussions. A final exam is given.

    Municipal Finance Administration for public purchasing professionals

    26 hours
    This course is an introduction to the field of municipal finance and is designed to provide a foundation for a better understanding of New Jersey local government fiscal affairs. Major areas of instruction cover the institutional framework of local government in New Jersey, the state’s role in supervision and assistance, property tax administration and assessment administration, municipal caps, municipal budgeting, budget execution, municipal purchasing, and treasury management. A final exam is given.

    CONTINUING EDUCATION COURSES

     

    INTRODUCTION TO PUBLIC PURCHASING

    4 hours
    This half-day seminar is designed for purchasing assistants, support staff, newcomers to purchasing office duties, and using agencies affected by the purchasing function. The program introduces the basic legal requirements of purchasing; explains forms, processes, and purchasing vocabulary; and recommends effective strategies. Participants gain a clear understanding of the total purchasing process and learn how to improve office efficiency.

    Local Public Contracts Law 

    12 hours
    This seminar provides a generalist's view of the Local Public Contracts Law. It provides municipal, county, and authority personnel with a foundation of understanding, while updating knowledge of, and application on, the intent and spirit of the Local Public Contracts Law.

    Local Public Contracts Law Rules

    6 hours
    This seminar is offered to municipal, county, and authority personnel to provide a foundation of understanding, while updating knowledge of, and application on, the intent and spirit of the Local Public Contract Law rules.

    beyond the local PUBLIC CONTRACTS LAW

    6 hours

    The Local Public Contracts Law (LPCL) and corresponding Rules are not the only Law and Rules that impact how your specifications and requests for proposals are developed.  This 6 hour course will examine when and how other laws and rules "Beyond the LPCL" influence the outcome of your final specifications and requests.

    specification writing

    hours

    Bid specifications are the heart of any resulting contract. Writer, researcher, and editor, are three words that describe what’s involved in the creating of good bid specifications. This program is designed to familiarize public entity management and purchasing personnel with the necessary tools and best practices for good specification writing, and also provide guidelines for separating needs from wants, in order to best describe the needed goods and/or services.

    The Bidding Process

    3 hours

    This course is designed to introduce local government purchasing personnel to the bidding process, as permitted by New Jersey State’s local government procurement laws and rules.  Local Public Contracts Law (N.J.S.A. 40A:11-1 et seq.) requires that an aggregated total of goods and services, within a same commodity, be subject to public bidding.  This course will define the parameters of commodity aggregation, and also identify the exceptions to public bidding as provided under N.J.S.A. 40A:11-5 et seq., and additionally, the course outlines the necessary skills and resources to use the bidding process and to develop bid specifications.

    Working With Vendors

    3 hours
    This half-day course discusses how to develop an effective business relationship with vendors. It provides guidelines for interviewing sales representatives, explains the bid process, covers vendor compliance, and reviews the ethical expectations of vendors and procurement staff.

    PUBLIC SCHOOL purchasing

    12 hours

    This 2-day course addresses issues that school board purchasing personnel deal with regularly. It reviews the Public Schools Contracts Law to enhance the effective purchasing practices of supplies and equipment, cooperative purchasing procedures, change order regulations and certification of funds. The course emphasizes the importance of standardized procedures and effective communication between purchasing personnel and the administration.

    Public School Bidding Process 

    6 hours
    This one-day course takes the student through the step-by-step process of public school bidding and quotations for goods and services, as well as public work construction bids in accordance with N.J.S.A. 18A:18A-1 et seq.

    Competitive Contracting

    6 hours
    This course explains the process of competitive contracting, a hybrid of bidding and RFP processes for consultants, professionals, and other services. It emphasizes the constraints associated with the process, and details the planning needed prior to issuing the RFP.

    Cooperative Purchasing Including Bid State Contracts 

    3.5 hours
    This course presents a review of cooperative purchasing. It includes the law, rules, and information on State Contracts.

    Public Works Construction Bids for School Districts

    3.0 hours

    This half-day session is designed for public school officials to familiarize themselves with the major aspects of a Public Works Construction project. The session will be led by a school architect familiar with educational specifications, project development, and preparation of technical construction specifications. Participants will also receive instruction from a public school purchasing agent on the proper public works bid documents and bid process. This session will be held on Tuesday, May 14, 2013 in New Brunswick, Center for Government Services, 303 George Street, 6th Floor, Classroom A. Registration fee is $133.00.

    Rutgers' Public Purchasing Certificate Program

    Rutgers Center for Government Services awards the Registered Public Purchasing Official and Registered Public Purchasing Specialist certificates upon the successful completion of Principles of Public Purchasing 1, 2, and 3, and a Municipal Finance Administration course to candidates who have also must meet specific job responsibility requirements and designated time in service.

    For more information on the certification requirements, click the "PP Certificate Program" link in the "Download a Brochure" box on the right. RPPO/S application forms are available in the "More Information" box. For further information, call the Center for Government Services at 732-932-3640, ext. 644.

    Registered Public Purchasing Official (RPPO) Criteria:

    • United States Citizenship;
    • Receipt of a certificate or diploma issued after completion of study in an approved secondary school or an academic education accepted by the Commissioner of Education of this state as fully equivalent;
    • Successful completion of Principles of Public Purchasing 1, 2 and 3 courses, as well as a Municipal Finance Administration course. Successful completion requires 80% attendance at each course and a passing grade of 80% for each course’s examination;
    • Current service in the public sector (local, state, federal) with administrative job responsibility such as the purchasing agent, charged with the purchasing responsibility on a day to day basis and authorized by the governing body to contract on behalf of the government unit, with supervisory responsibility for the management of people or programs in a purchasing environment for not less than 5 years;                 -OR -
    • Current service in the public sector (local, state, federal) holding the RPPS certification, having worked directly under the supervision of an RPPO for a minimum of 3 years, and having been appointed to a position with administrative job responsibility such as the purchasing agent, charged with the purchasing responsibility on a day to day basis and authorized by the governing body to contract on behalf of the government unit, with supervisory responsibility for the management of people or programs in a purchasing environment for not less than 2 years.

    NOTE: Waiver of time in position for 1 year of credit toward the service requirement of 5 years will be given for every 2 years of college credit. A minimum of 3 years experience in the public sector with appropriate job title and responsibility is required. No credit is given for time in the private sector.

    Completed application form must be submitted with supporting material and a $25 application fee. 

    Registered Public Purchasing Specialist  (RPPS) Criteria:

    • United States Citizenship;
    • Receipt of a certificate or diploma issued after completion of study in an approved secondary school or an academic education accepted by the Commissioner of Education of this state as fully equivalent;
    • Successful completion of Principles of Public Purchasing 1, 2 and 3 courses, as well as a Municipal Finance Administration course. Successful completion requires 80% attendance at each course and a passing grade of 80% for each course’s examination;
    • Current service in the public sector (local, state, federal) in the general administration of the purchasing process for not less than three years.

    NOTE: Waiver of time in position for 1 year of credit toward the service requirement of 3 years will be given for every 2 years of college credit. A minimum of 2 years experience in the public sector with appropriate job responsibility is required. No credit is given for time in the private sector.

    Completed application form must be submitted with supporting material and a $25 application fee. 

    CERTIFICATION RENEWALS

    Required credit for Recertification must include three (3) contact hours of “Ethics” for both RPPO and RPPS certificate holders. Remaining credits must be in Public Purchasing, of which three (3) may be in Management/Supervision subjects. The applicant is responsible for retaining all records of attendance, organization membership and program participation.

    RPPO Certificate Renewals 

    The certification renewal period is every three years. Twenty (20) continuing education contact hours must be earned over this period. 

    RPPS Certificate Renewals 

    The certification renewal period is every three years. Fifteen (15) continuing education contact hours must be earned over this period. 

    Expired Certificates
     
    Certificates 90 days or more past the expiration date are no longer considered valid. The holder of an invalid or lapsed certificate who is unable to accumulate the appropriate continuing education credit must take a written exam in order to renew the certification. To confirm the applicant’s knowledge of recent developments in the purchasing field, the exam stresses current issues. The exam will be given as deemed necessary by the number of requests received. Renewal will be dated from the month the applicant passes the exam. Certification renewal through examination is $50.

    If an individual’s certification has lapsed and the exam option is not taken, the individual must wait a period of three years from the expiration date before being able to once again apply for the RPPO or RPPS certification. The applicant must have completed Principles of Public Purchasing 1, 2, and 3 courses not more than 10 years earlier. If the courses were taken prior to then, the courses must be retaken and successfully completed.

    Continuing Education Credits 

    Continuing education credit can be earned by attendance at seminars, workshops, classes or conferences and through numerous methods of professional development.

    Attendance at Seminars, Workshops, Classes and Conferences:

    Credit is given based on hour-for-hour participation, not to exceed five (5) hours per program. Submitted documentation must indicate program title, date and 
    number of continuing education contact hours earned.

    Professional Development Credit Assignments: 

    • Acceptable records for submission include certificates of attendance, record of payment of dues, letters of appointment to committees, copies of published articles, copies of instructional material (20+ pages), proof of speaking engagements and teaching assignments.
    • 1 contact hour per membership per year in professional purchasing organizations (GPANJ/NIGP, etc.);    
    • 1 contact hour per meeting of above organizations;     
    • 1 contact hour per year for holding an office in state, county, and national professional purchasing organizations;
    • 1 contact hour per year for participation on standing or special committees for professional organizations;
    • 2 contact hours per publication of a signed article; 
    • 1 contact hour per chapter of instructional material;
    • 5 contact hours per teaching assignment for instructing in purchasing related courses lasting 5 or more hours;
    • Hour per hour, up to 5 hours, for participation as a speaker, moderator, or panel member in a conference, seminar or workshop.
     

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    Louis Demian
    Program Assistant
    732-932-3640, ext. 644
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    Introduction: 

    2017 League of Municipalities Conference

    Pre-approved sessions as of September 25, 2017

    Individuals holding Board Secretary, Zoning Official, and/or Land Use Administrator certificate(s) issued by the Center for Government Services can accrue continuing education hours toward the renewal of their certificate(s) by attending any of the sessions listed on the attached document.  Please note that this information may be updated as additional League information becomes available. The most current listing of approved sessions will be available here.

     

    In cooperation with the New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators, the Center for Government Services at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, offers two certificate programs:
    • Planning and Zoning Administration
    • Zoning Administration and Enforcement

    Also, as a member of the Partners for Municipal Land Use Education, CGS offers a six-hour course for planning and zoning board members:

    • Land Use for Board Members

    Course Descriptions

     

    PLANNING AND ZONING ADMINISTRATION

    This series of courses is intended to meet the educational needs of those municipal employees who are designated administrative officers in accordance with the New Jersey Municipal Land Use Law, N.J.S.A. 40:55D-1 et seq., and secretaries to planning boards and zoning boards of adjustment.  Those who attain a passing grade in all three courses are eligible to apply for the Board Secretary certificate for a period of three years from the date the student successfully completed the last class.  The application form is available in the Downloads box to the right.

    Introduction to Planning and Zoning Administration 

    16 Hours
    This course offers a comprehensive overview of basic administrative procedures for planning and zoning support staff. Discussions cover the duties of each board, the legal responsibilities of the administrative officer, and such practical matters as the preparation of agendas and minutes, notice requirements, and the management of escrow accounts. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

    Financial and Records Management for Planning and Zoning Offices

    6 Hours
    Prerequisite: Introduction to Planning and Zoning Administration
    In this seminar, both the financial and record-keeping aspects of the board secretary’s job are explained. The morning portion focuses on traditional records management topics. Practical advice on file management is given, and state records retention and disposal requirements are reviewed. The second half of the seminar emphasizes escrow account administration in the context of the application review process. Other financial management topics include budget preparation and administration, application fees, and post-approval guarantees and inspection fees. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

    Understanding Plans: Site Plan and Subdivision Review for Administrative Officers and Board Secretaries

    10 Hours
    Prerequisite: Financial and Records Management for Planning and Zoning Offices
    In this course, the administrative officer and board secretary are exposed to some of the technical aspects of plan review. The administrative processing requirements for applications are discussed. Planning and engineering terminology is explained, and the symbols for various physical features and design elements are identified. Classroom exercises offer opportunities to become familiar with various types of plans and to review plans for completeness. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

    ZONING ADMINISTRATION AND ENFORCEMENT

    This series of courses is intended to meet the educational needs of those municipal employees who serve as zoning officers or zoning officials in accordance with the New Jersey Municipal Land Use Law, N.J.S.A. 40:55D-1 et seq., and who have responsibility for enforcing local zoning ordinances.  Those who attain a passing grade in all three courses are eligible to apply for the Zoning Official certificate for a period of three years from the date the student successfully completed the last class.  The application form is available in the Downloads box to the right.

    Introduction to Zoning Administration and Enforcement 

    18 Hours
    This course focuses on the technical knowledge and skills necessary for an individual to effectively interpret and enforce a municipal zoning ordinance. Emphasis is placed on the practical aspects of the job, including on-site inspections and compliance options. An introduction to the Municipal Land Use Law is provided, and the content and structure of zoning ordinances are thoroughly discussed. A written examination at the conclusion of the course includes both in-class and take-home components.

    Understanding Plans: Site Plan and Subdivision Review for Zoning Officials

    10 Hours
    Prerequisite: Introduction to Zoning Administration and Enforcement
    In this seminar, the zoning official is exposed to some of the technical aspects of plan review. The administrative processing requirements for applications are discussed. Planning and engineering terminology is explained, and the symbols for various physical features and design elements are identified. Classroom exercises offer opportunities to become familiar with surveys, site plan, and subdivision drawings; to review plans for completeness; and to learn how conditions of approval are enforced. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

    Zoning Administration and Enforcement II

    12 Hours
    Prerequisite: Understanding Plans: Site Plan and Subdivision Review for Zoning Officials
    The third course in the series builds on the first two. Students are taught zoning case law, advanced administrative and investigative techniques, and communication skills. Significant zoning-related court cases are reviewed, and students learn how to perform such tasks as writing reports and conducting survey inspections. Homework assignments, case studies, and other classroom exercises are used extensively. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

    Land Use for Board Members

    In 2005 the New Jersey State Legislature enacted N.J.S.A. 40:55D-23.3 and 23.4, which require that members of municipal planning boards, zoning boards of adjustment, and combined boards successfully complete a basic training course within 18 months of their appointment. The statute and implementing regulations call for five hours of instruction offered by course providers approved by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs. For more information about the requirements, go to the Planning/Zoning Education page on the DCA website.

    With over sixty years of experience in training New Jersey officials, the Center for Government Services understands the demands placed on board members. Now, CGS — as a member of the Partners for Municipal Land Use Education — is offering a six-hour course for planning and zoning board members. The partners who helped develop the course are:

    • Rutgers Center for Government Services
    • The Municipal Land Use Center at the College of New Jersey
    • New Jersey Future
    • New Jersey Chapter of the American Planning Association
    • New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators
     

    Land Use for Board Members (Course Description)

    6 Hours
    The curriculum involves six hours of classroom instruction, including a hands-on opportunity to learn how to review site plans and subdivisions. It is presented by an experienced land use attorney and a professional planner. Registrants receive a copy of the PowerPoint presentation used by the instructors, a copy of the Municipal Land Use Law, and a copy of Planning and Zoning in New Jersey, a manual developed specifically for the program and as a resource for municipal planning and zoning board members. Copies of Planning and Zoning in New Jersey may be purchased from the Center without registering for the course. For additional information and a publication order form visit the CGS Publications page.

    This course satisfies the requirements of the "Basic Course in Land Use Law and Planning" Training Program required pursuant to P.L. 2005, c. 133 and has been approved by the Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs.

    Certification

    Upon successful completion of the Planning and Zoning Administration program, a student may apply for a planning board/zoning board secretary certificate, which must be renewed every five (5) years. 

    Upon successful completion of the Zoning Administration and Enforcement program, a student may apply for a zoning official certificate, which also must be renewed every five (5) years.

    Those individuals who hold the Board Secretary certificate and work full time in a municipal land use office for a minimum of five years may be eligible to apply for the additional designation of Land Use Administrator. No additional courses are required prior to making application, but the applicant must be able to document extensive administrative and/or supervisory experience. They also must supply three (3) letters of professional reference and respond to a questionnaire. The Education Advisory Committee for the Center’s land use curricula reviews the applications, and qualified applicants are invited to an interview. Post-interview, the full Committee votes on the application, and the designation is awarded to those applicants approved by a simple majority of the committee membership.

    Board Secretary and Zoning Official certificate applications are available in the Downloads box at the top of this webpage.

    Land Use Administrator applications are available upon request. For further information on the LUA, call Laura Flagg at 732-932-3640, ext. 623.

    Continuing Education

    In order to maintain and renew a Board Secretary certificate, certificate holders must accrue fifteen (15) hours of continuing education related to land use and/or general administration.  Those who hold the Zoning Official certificate must accrue twenty (20) hours of continuing education, and those who are awarded the Land Use Administrator designation must accrue thirty (30) hours of continuing education every five (5) years in order to renew the certificate.

    It is the responsibility of the certificate holders to keep track of their renewal credits and apply for renewal at the appropriate time. If a certificate is not renewed, it expires. An application for renewing any of the three credentials is available here.

    Both the Center for Government Services and the New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators offer continuing education seminars that give certificate holders the opportunity to accrue the necessary hours. CE credits toward certificate renewal is automatically awarded to those who attend the "Current Issues in Planning and Zoning" series, co-sponsored by CGS and NJAPZA. Credit is also approved by Rutgers for relevant seminars offered by a variety of organizations including the New Jersey State League of Municipalities, New Jersey Future, the New Jersey Chapter of the American Planning Association, and New Jersey Planning Officials.

    Conference

    The Center for Government Services co-sponsors an annual Planning and Zoning Continuing Education Conference with the New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators. Conference information will be posted here as details are finalized.

     

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    Priscilla Hamilton 
    Program Assistant
    732-932-3640, ext. 646
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    Introduction: 

    The Center for Government Services at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, designed this series of core courses to train municipal clerks and related personnel in the duties and responsibilities of their office. Other municipal officials are invited to enroll in the courses, provided that space is available and the prerequisites are satisfied. Experienced members of the field, many of whom are serving or have served in executive positions of the Municipal Clerks' Association of New Jersey, comprise the instructional staff

    Courses are scheduled in both the fall and spring semesters at varied locations throughout the state. Times and locations are announced in advance of each semester.

    Study Guide Information:

    The Third Edition of the New Jersey Municipal Clerks Study Guide (2010) and Supplements No. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 are now available. To purchase a copy, use the order form in the Downloads box on the right sidebar of this web page.

    Cooperating Agencies:

     

    Course Descriptions

     

    Introduction to the Duties of the Municipal Clerk 

    24 hours
    This course serves to acquaint the student with statutory and some
    non-statutory duties of the municipal clerk, and offers a general introduction to municipal government. Specific areas of responsibility covered include core duties, legalized games of chance, meeting agendas and minutes, open public meetings, general office procedures, and various licenses and licensing procedures. There is a review and examination.

    Advanced Duties of the Municipal Clerk 

    21 hours
    Prerequisite: Introduction to the Duties of the Municipal Clerk
    A more detailed and technical description of the municipal clerk's office is presented in this course. Subjects include personnel policies and procedures, municipal land use law, financial duties, and other miscellaneous duties. There is a review and examination.

    Local Elections Administration 

    21 hours
    This course is designed to acquaint students with Title 19, the goals of which are to assure a fair and open electoral process, full participation by the electorate, and clear lines of responsibility for elected officials. Topics covered include the responsibilities of the County Board of Elections and the County Clerk's office, voter registration, petitions and referenda, and political party procedure. The Faulkner Act election procedures and Charter Study Law and procedures also are discussed. There is a review and examination.

    Information and Records Management 

    18 hours
    The management of information continues to undergo revolutionary change. Terminologies as well as processes have shifted dramatically. Retention of records and records filing have evolved into management information systems. This course teaches essential records management techniques and addresses the role of "clerk as information manager." In-class final and take-home examinations are given.

    Municipal Finance Administration for Municipal Clerks 

    24 hours
    Prerequisite: Advanced Duties of the Municipal Clerk
    This course is designed to provide the foundation for a better understanding of local government fiscal affairs. Major areas covered include the institutional framework of local government, the state's role in supervision and assistance, local public contracts law, municipal caps, municipal budgeting, budget execution, and local budget law and local bond law. A final exam is given.

    Municipal Clerk Review Course 

    18 hours
    Prerequisite: Completion of all five Municipal Clerks program courses
    Text: New Jersey Municipal Clerks Study Guide (2010)
    This program is a review of the Municipal Clerks curriculum, and is offered prior to the State Registered Municipal Clerk (RMC) Examination. It does not include a review of the state exam questions, and it is not required to take the New Jersey certification exam.

    Continuing Education

    Rutgers Center for Government Services awards certificates for the satisfactory completion of each course. This is defined as attendance at 80 percent of the class hours, a passing grade of 80 or higher, and full payment of all fees.

    New Jersey Certification and State Exam

    Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:9-133 et al., Chapter 174, P.L. 1985, a municipal clerk may qualify for certification by the State of New Jersey as Registered Municipal Clerk. Examinations for the Registered Municipal Clerk designation are given periodically by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs Certification Unit, Division of Local Government Services (DLGS). For information on experience and other requirements for attaining certification, please contact the DLGS at 609-633-6349 or visit the Division website.

    Recertification

    All persons holding the certification of Registered Municipal Clerk in the State of New Jersey are required to obtain 20 contact hours of continuing education during a two-year period. For further information, visit the websites of the Certification Unit of the NJ Department of Community Affairs, http://www.state.nj.us/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/certification.html, or the Municipal Clerks’ Association of New Jersey, www.njclerks.org.

    International Institute of Municipal Clerks (IIMC) Programs

    Rutgers University is the designated IIMC Institute in New Jersey. At the Center for Government Services, the program has been developed in conjunction with the Municipal Clerks Association of NJ (MCANJ). Inquiries regarding the NJ IIMC programs can be directed to the NJ Institute Director, at flagg@docs.rutgers.edu.  To join the International Institute of Municipal Clerks, visit www.iimc.com for questions, membership requirements and an application form. 

     

    Certified Municipal Clerk (CMC) Institute

    IIMC requires a minimum of 120 hours of university instruction to qualify for its CMC professional designation. The NJ Institute focus is primarily on topics relating to management, communication, and leadership. A minimum of four CMC Institute courses, sponsored in New Jersey by the Rutgers Center for Government Services, will be offered at various times throughout the year. Frequently these will be offered jointly with MMC courses. Through the university one education credit is earned for every two hours class time towards the educational requirement, as well as NJ DCA approved professional development credits. IIMC membership is not required for attendance. Separate CMC Institute announcements are emailed either from Rutgers or the MCANJ; occasionally flyers or brochures will be mailed. Announcements are always available on the Center’s website as well as the IIMC and the MCANJ’s websites. 

    Master Municipal Clerk (MMC) Academy

    This MMC program is designed to offer advanced training and education in management and interpersonal subject areas. The purpose is to promote continuing education of the professional municipal clerk. CMC designation is a prerequisite for this program. A minimum of three MMC Academy courses, sponsored in New Jersey by the Rutgers Center for Government Services, will be offered at various times throughout the year. Through the university one education credit is earned for every two hours class time towards the educational requirement, as well as NJ DCA approved professional development credits. IIMC membership is not required for attendance. Separate MMC Academy announcements are emailed either from Rutgers or the MCANJ; occasionally flyers or brochures will be mailed. Announcements are always available on the Center’s website as well as the IIMC and the MCANJ’s websites.

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