The New Jersey Republican Party isn’t exactly killing it right now, Save Jerseyans, with the U.S. Attorney and U.S. Media establishment ravenously circling and pecking at its figurehead like hungry buzzards starved for a fresh carcass.
But you know what? It’s very much in Paul Fishman’s hands. The table is already set and the pieces are moving independent of externalities.
The real battle lies on the other side of the aisle at the moment, and it’s one which has the potential to become so messy, so quickly, that it could actually undermine Democrat chances of capitalizing on Bridgegate’s fallout in the coming cycle(s)…
If Minority Leader Jon Bramnick’s GOP caucus regularly went after Trenton’s Democrats with the same skill and ferocity with which he took apart Bonnie Watson Coleman and her MSNBC buddies the other night, Save Jerseyans, then we’d be well on our way to majority status! He didn’t let her up off the mat…
Speaker Prieto (right) is playing games with your property tax bill.
We’re less than 72 hours away from an arbitration sunset and while Governor Christie and the State Senate appear to be on the same page, Speaker Prieto’s General Assembly left Trenton for the weekend without any indication as to when they might take up Governor Christie’s suggested revisions in order to avert disaster and achieve a compromise. Sources under the Dome say Prieto isn’t satisfied with the Governor’s concessions (or lack thereof) for unspecified reasons.
It’s the worst game of ‘chicken’ imaginable.
Assembly dysfunction is so bad, in fact, that Asm. Declan O’Scanlon is advising New Jersey municipalities to file for arbitration prior to April 1st in order to avoid the negative consequences of the existing hard cap’s imminent expiration.
Pathetic doesn’t even begin to describe it, Save Jerseyans. Here are two floor speeches, one from O’Scanlon and the other delivered by his colleague Jack Ciattarelli, which do an excellent job of summarizing the stakes for New Jersey property taxpayers…
Governor Chris Christie issued a conditional veto on Thursday night to an arbitration cap proposal initiated by Democrats that would’ve killed the law’s true intent through exemptions. The State Senate subsequently voted 33-1 to concur with the Governor’s conditional veto and extend the 2% cap and prevent a sunset provision from kicking-in on April 1.
“Without question, the reforms to New Jersey’s arbitration system enacted in 2010 have been effective in controlling spending and helping municipalities limit property tax increases,” Governor Christie stated in his conditional veto message. “Extending the successful and essential control on arbitration awards enacted in 2010 is therefore the sensible and logical course.”
Plenty of politicians talk about “creating” jobs, Save Jerseyans, but only a few actually try to unshackle the free market and let it put people back to work.
Freshman Assemblyman Sam Fiocchi (R-1) is trying to do just that, strongly urging the Pinelands Commission to reconsider its vote that killed the much-anticipated BL England (BLE) Pipeline Project.
“From a safety, economic and environmental standpoint, this project is a winning combination for all stakeholders,” said Fiocchi during a presser last week in the Cape May County community of Upper Township. “The state-of-the art pipeline will help a power supplier provide cleaner energy without damaging our natural resources as it will run under and adjacent to already paved roadways. It will also provide nearly 300 temporary construction jobs and, when completed, 100 permanent jobs.”
Folks: last week’s roll call of the Assembly vote on restricting magazines to 10 rounds has caused some debate in my neck of the woods on Assemblyman Bob Andrzejczak’s (D LD-1) commitment to the Second Amendment.
Andrzejczak voted “No”, not that his vote was a tiebreaker. Some people have argued that the Assemblyman is not a true advocate for the Second Amendment, that he does not stand up to the Democrats who are chipping away at gun rights, that he merely said what Jeff Van Drew told him to say to get backing from the NJ2AS membership last fall, and will only vote in favor of 2A issues if there are enough Dem votes to shoot down the bill. Others have countered that Andrzejczak is a strong 2A advocate, who does speak up on behalf of NJ gun owners, and just found himself in the same situation as many GOP 2A legislators: the numbers simple weren’t on his side.
Well, Save Jerseyans, there’s a very easy way to determine which side is right, the “Bob’s a poser” or the “Bob’s the real deal” factions. Below please find the transcript of every speech Bob Andrzejczak gave in opposing this legislation.
New Jersey property taxes will likely resume the double digit annual growth that occurred under the McGreevey, Codey and Corzine Administrations if Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto’s version of the of the Interest Arbitration extension becomes law. Either that, or municipal governments as we know them will cease to exist, succumbing to a long and painful death of higher crime and reduced services and capital improvements.
A 2% cap on interest arbitration awards in labor disputes was a key component of the 2% property tax cap negotiated between Governor Chris Christie, Senate President Steve Sweeney and Prieto’s predecessor, Sheila Oliver in 2010. It worked. Arbitrators made awards of less that 2% to police and fire fighters unions and property taxes rose less than 2% per year over the last four years.
The problem is Oliver insisted that the arbitration cap expire on April 1, 2014. Now, we’re a week before the arbitration cap expires and Prietro is gutting the cap by passing an extension of the law that exempts contracts that were awarded less than 2% during the last three years from any future caps and raises the cap to 3% on contracts that have not been negotiated since 2010.
The math will never work. If property taxes stay capped at 2% but the primary cost of property taxes, salaries, are not capped or are capped at 3%, municipal services will disappear. Police will be laid off, with the junior, lower paid officers being let go first, leaving the older and more highly paid officers to run drown the inevitable increase in crime. Towns will go bust. The state will take over municipal governments and force consolidations.
The New Jersey Assembly struck yet another blow against the rule of law today, Save Jerseyans, by passing both A-2006 (a 10-round limit on the capacity of gun magazines) and A-2777 (defines “reasonable deviation” in the context of transporting firearms).
Assemblyman Republican Conference Leader David Rible (R-Monmouth and Ocean) didn’t mince words:
“Passage of the gun magazine ban is a victory for all gun-toting criminals who will continue to ignore our gun laws. At the same time, the legislation approved today only serves to make criminals out of law-abiding gun owners.”
The Senate majority supports new magazine limits; its fate will soon be in Governor Chris Christie’s hands. Click here to contact his office.
Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon, R-Monmouth, issued a statement today welcoming Marlboro Mayor Jon Hornik’s support of Regional Contribution Agreements (RCA) for use in getting Sandy victims back into their homes, and called upon residents of his Bayshore district to question Senate President Sweeney the use of Affordable Housing Funds when Sweeney visits the district for his Town Hall meeting in Keansburg on Thursday afternoon.
“Recently, Marlboro Mayor Jon Hornik suggested that RCAs could be used by towns to help their neighbors continue to rebuild in the devastating wake of Sandy . My Republican colleagues and I have been calling for the use of RCAs for years and I am excited to hear that Mayor Hornik is on board. When the Democrat leadership in Trenton killed the RCA program it was bad, short sighted policy that many of us knew would come back to bite us. Its flaws are now magnified by the plight of Sandy victims as many towns struggle with the economic burdening of rebuilding.
U.S. Senate Candidate Murray Sabrin rolled out legislative endorsements from Northwestern N.J. on Tuesday morning, Save Jerseyans, including State Sens. Steve Oroho and Mike Doherty along with Assemblywoman Alison Littell McHose and Assemblyman Parker Space.
A word cloud consisting of one word: liberty.
“Murray Sabrin’s decades-long commitment to limited government, individual liberty and independence and personal responsibility place him head and shoulders above his primary opponents,” said Oroho, McHose and Space in a joint statement.