Push Comes To Shove


Mark of New Jersey

Mark is a Founding Editor of The League of Ordinary Gentlemen, the predecessor of Ordinary Times.

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3 Responses

  1. Avatar Scott says:

    If municipalities need more money why aren’t they expected to raise it themselves instead of going hat in hand to the the state and expecting the state to increase taxes so they can fund local operations?Report

    • New Jersey’s property taxes are about 40% higher than any other state in the country (second is NH, which unlike NJ has no sales or income tax). In any event, it’s not as simple as that. The aid Mulshine is referencing is primarily education money. For various reasons, a handful of urban districts in the state essentially have money thrown at them. The suburban districts in question, however, get comparatively small amounts of money from the state even though they provide a disproportionate amount of the funding for that aid. As I understand it, Christie’s budget increases that imbalance, barely touching funding for the urban districts but slashing aid to the suburban districts that already put in more than they get out to begin with. Meanwhile, he actually increases direct state government spending. So the state government grows in size, the urban areas are enabled to continue wasting money, and the suburban areas pay for it, just indirectly.

      He does nothing to actually address the underlying long-term fiscal problems of the state. Instead, he just rearranges the deck chairs to make it look like he’s doing something. Presumably the gamble is that he’ll be able to take credit for modest improvements in the state’s fiscal situation while taking none of the blame for the property tax increases in suburbia (which are officially a local government function).Report