Without the tax increase, he said, the township would have had to lay off as many as 19 employees.
At Brown's encouragement, the council repeatedly postponed adopting the budget on symbolic grounds, arguing that the state's property-tax formula is onerous for municipalities, since they must shoulder the cost of tax collection and appeals for themselves as well as their schools, fire districts, and counties.
In July, the Township Council tried to force a compensation agreement from the other entities by voting to withhold the next round of payments to the Lenape Regional School District, the local school district, and Evesham Fire-Rescue.
In the meetings that followed, however, leaders of those entities said that they understood the township's position but that there was nothing they could do under existing law to compensate the town for those costs.
Brown said he had hoped the township's action would get the attention of lawmakers, other mayors, the state Department of Education, and police, fire, and municipal workers unions, but was disappointed by the lack of response.
"We're not giving up," Brown said.
Like many other municipalities, Evesham has seen a marked decline in the value of its tax base since the start of the recession in 2008 and last year paid out $1.5 million for property-tax appeals that it lost.
This year's lost tax appeals - most on commercial properties - are expected to surpass last year's. The township also must appropriate $1.8 million in anticipation of unpaid taxes.
Brown and other council members say a change in the property-tax-collection formula would likely do little to reduce the tax burden on property owners but could "spread the pain" so that municipalities are not the only entities forced to make layoffs or cut services in times of economic hardship.
Contact David O'Reilly at 856-779-3841 or email@example.com or @doreillyinq on Twitter.