The wall has come down between Princeton Township and Princeton Borough, after a solid majority of voters in each town elected to merge the two municipalities, according to Bloomberg News.
And why would a business news company like Bloomberg be interested? Because this move is designed to save money. A 10-member commission of residents and elected officials from the borough and township calculated that merging these two places should eventually save their combined budgets $3.2 million a year.
If the towns had already consolidated by now, borough property owners would have saved $201 in taxes this year, on average, and township members would have saved $240, NJ.com has said.
Princeton Township, which has long favored the merger, voted for it 3,542 to 604. The borough, which had been against it the last time such a measure arose in 1996, seems to have passed it 1,238 to 828 against. Both votes have some absentee ballots still to come, but the outcome seems clear.
Governor Chris Christie has encouraged this merger, to the point where he’s offered to pay 20 percent of the total $1.7 million cost, Bloomberg said. He’s also urging New Jersey’s other 566 municipalities to consider consolidations as well.
NJ.com noted the state has 21 other sets of towns where, like Princeton Township and Borough respectively, one two completely surrounds the other.
The two Princetons originally split in 1894, when a dispute over school funding led residents in the borough area to secede. The division had remained even long after the two municipalities combined schools again.