Trenton Democrats Poised To Blow Up The Property Tax Cap

Trenton Democrats Poised To Blow Up The Property Tax Cap

By Art Gallagher |

FirefightersNew 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.

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16 thoughts on “Trenton Democrats Poised To Blow Up The Property Tax Cap

  1. What does a picture of a firefighter have to do with your headline ?? You realize municipal tax portion for emergency workers is about 4% of the bill ?? Keep pushing Christies lies.

  2. Dems are getting desperate for union money injection. In response, suburban towns should start seriously shrinking their police payroll sheet. “Cop presence” in suburbia is mostly about issuing iffy speeding tickets and smashing young lives for a harmless weed joint. There will be lots of fake outrage in the media, but it’s not that Ledger would suddenly start loving Republicans otherwise.

  3. So if this bill is vetoed by the governor the cap is done. But if the bill passes the cap is also done since that’s what it was designed to do. If the Dems had any guts on this they would just not extend the bill. But they want to look like they care about property taxes without actually doing anything.

  4. Keep drinking the Kool aid James. Police and fire ARE the middle class and pay not only taxes but the HIGHEST contribution to the pension system in nation how about the legislature and tough talking Gov go after the health care providers and their annual 10-15% jump in coverage prices. ? Oh wait they contribute too much campaign $$$$. Let’s demonize those that put thier lives on the line.

  5. “Let’s demonize those that put their lives on the line” – you mean the local bakery’s counter line for free donuts, right? The mortality rate of suburban cops and firemen is negligible, likely on par with desk jobs. Trenton or Paterson could be different, though.

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