I read with great interest the Administration’s “Christie by the Numbers” press release from last week but I was disappointed because it didn’t include one of Governor Christie’s best numbers: $552 million.
Are you scratching your head? This number represents the statewide savings in property taxes created by the Governor’s 2.0% cap just in 2011.
Remember the cap was voted into law in July 2010 to take effect for the full year of 2011. Meanwhile, total property taxes across New Jersey’s 566 municipalities, approximately 700 school districts and counties were cruising along with an average increase of 3.85% per year from 2008 to 2010.
But when we hit 2011, the spending brakes were slammed because of the cap and the average annual increase dropped to 1.38%.
This is a full 65% less than the average increase of the preceding 3 years, and well below the 2.0% cap.
So what does this mean? If Governor Christie didn’t devise the toolkit and the 2.0% cap, property taxes would have continued to increase at an average rate of 3.85%, meaning that total New Jersey property taxes in 2011 would have increased $856 million. But instead they only increased $304 million or 1.38%.
This is $552 million less than they would have increased if it weren’t for the cap, a savings of $174 for each and every household in New Jersey.
One final thought.
Without the 2.0% cap, property taxes would have increased another 3.85% in 2012 like clockwork , costing taxpayers an additional $500 million. So between 2011 and 2012, taxpayers would have paid an additional $1 billion in property taxes that because of Governor Christi they didn’t have to take out of their pocket.
I think $552 million is a great number and should be added to Governor’s list of accomplishments!