About 200 houses in the township's Ortley Beach neighborhood sustained catastrophic damage, he said.
The economic loss to the township is so great that Shives said Toms River will need to rely on the same kind of transitional state aid that so-called "distressed" cities like Camden, N.J., and Newark, N.J., have been receiving for years to maintain a functioning municipal government.
The township has estimated that a full economic recovery will take about five years.
"But there's a whole lot more unknown than known," Shives said.
The drop in Monmouth County's tax base isn't expected to have a huge effect on the county's budget or tax rate.
"I don't think it's going to be as bad as we anticipated," Monmouth County Freeholder Gary Rich said. "With $500 million spread out across a number of towns, hopefully, the impact won't be great."
In Union Beach, N.J., where 300 of 2,336 homes have to be demolished and as many as 65(PERCENT) were damaged, a loss of $42.8 million in assessed property value represents almost 10(PERCENT) of the borough's tax base. Union Beach Mayor Paul Smith said the borough estimates it will lose $1.2 million in tax revenue this year.
That is a sizable portion of the borough's $8.4 million municipal budget.
Smith hopes the borough will receive federal aid to make up for the revenue loss but said he he doesn't want to think of how much taxes would have to go up if no aid is forthcoming.
"It could be a scary number," Smith said. "We don't want to see it."
In neighboring Keansburg, N.J., one of the area's poorer communities, where about 1,800 of some 4,000 homes were damaged and $27 million in value was lost, officials have done some calculations, and the numbers aren't pretty.
The county tax board estimates Keansburg will lose $893,963 in property taxes this year, which comes out to almost 6(PERCENT) of last year's budget.
If no aid is forthcoming, the tax rate would have to increase about 20 cents for each $100 of assessed value to make up for the loss in the tax base, Keansburg Mayor George Hoff said. The average homeowner would pay $800 to $1,000 more in property taxes.
"The average median income (in Keansburg) is $36,000," Hoff said. "It's going to affect the working class families very much. aÂ€|It's a tough pill to swallow.
"We haven't gone into cutting any services yet," he said. "Right now, we're at the wait-and-see stage."