N.J. Democrat ‘war on the rich’ just cost us hundreds of millions of dollars

By Matt Rooney | The Save Jersey Blog

Photo credit: Appaloosa Management
Photo credit: Appaloosa Management

It’s well-established that New Jersey lost something in the neighborhood of $18 billion due over the last ten years due to outbound migration; another frequently cited number during the McGreevey-Codey-Corzine years is $70 billion.

Those grisly statistics just got much uglier by a roughly 9-figure sum all due to the regrettable but 100% understandable decision of one very rich dude.

You may’ve heard this week that Appaloosa Management’s David Tepper – a hedge fund titan – bolted New Jersey late last year for the sunny shores of Florida. He was our state’s wealthiest resident, and he’s reportedly taking a key component of his firm’s organization and employees with him, too.

We won’t miss him for bragging rights. Tepper paid a LOT of taxes. The revenues Trenton Democrats are always getting worked up over.

I won’t bore you with a discussion of deferred compensation and how offshore assets are taxed. Suffice it to say, New Jersey just lost out on hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue from a man who paid our state’s 8.97% personal income tax on billions in deferred income which would’ve become payable to the state treasury in 2017. That’s a significant hit for a state with a $10+ billion structural deficit.

Florida doesn’t have a personal income tax.

Do the math.

Sure, not everyone has lost their minds. “Every time there is talk about increasing taxes on the highest earners, we risk pushing more of them out of state, just as Mr. Tepper did, to states that don’t tax income at all,” explained state Senator Steve Oroho (R-24) this week in response to media analysis of Tepper’s big move. “Think of all the critical programs, including those that act as a safety net, that could have been funded by the taxes this one person would have paid. Instead, he’s found a simple and effective way to lower his New Jersey tax bill to zero. Think of the devastating impact to New Jersey if just a handful of others at high income levels follow his lead.”

He and his fellow Republicans continue to try to eat around the edges of a worst-in-the-nation tax climate but, as Save Jersey readers are painfully aware, the status quo is protected by the Democrat majority and their public sector union overlords. Oroho is sponsoring legislation to kill New Jersey’s estate tax (S-1728), raise the retirement income exclusion fivefold for New Jersey retirees (S-998), and establish a state income tax deduction for charitable contributions (S-1932). Those bills would help if they could get to the Governor’s desk.

Moving VanDon’t get your hopes up.

“New Jersey has both an estate tax and an inheritance tax that many other states don’t have, we have among the highest income tax rates, and we don’t give deductions for charitable giving that could benefit the non-profits that serve as a safety net to our residents,” continued Oroho. “New Jersey has great assets, with so much to offer. Many people who have changed their residency to other states would truly love to continue to call New Jersey their home. Some may enjoy going to a warmer climate for the colder months, but just for a few months, and then return home to their families and friends. They are willing to pay a reasonable tax to enjoy all the benefits of New Jersey — not just at any and all costs. New Jersey has lost a total of $19 billion of adjusted gross income alone in just the last 10 years, and the exodus of this income is accelerating with the last year of available data being the worst yet. New Jersey can and must reverse this income exodus, if not, we risk losing more of our top taxpayers and having less resources to serve the people of New Jersey, which will put an even heavier burden on those who do not have the means to change their residency.”

Everyone knows at least a few folks who’ve fled New Jersey in search of liberty and prosperity. They’re voting with their feet. Now, however, when Democrats say we’re exaggerating for blaming the state’s fiscal dilemma on exclusionary tax policies, we don’t need to cite studies.

We need only utter one name: Tepper. Remember Tepper.

New Jersey Democrat policies – specifically, their obsession with holding up the millionaire’s tax as an answer for every problem – will NEVER work until they can figure out how to tax ghosts or circumvent the U.S. Constitution-protected fundamental right to vote with your feet. This isn’t a subjective theory or matter of opinion. It’s a documented reality. Wise up!

We’re paying a terrible price for Democrats kissing the public sector unions’ asses.

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15 thoughts on “N.J. Democrat ‘war on the rich’ just cost us hundreds of millions of dollars

  1. Abandon ship while you still can, “Save Jerseyans!” The uber-rich, the slip-n-fall attorneys, various celebrities and the political oligarchy can all afford to “dig in” and stay put but be assured: one fine day you’ll see the likes of Matt Ro00ney and Bill Spadea cramming their goods into a Mayflower Moving truck and joining the exodus.

  2. Sorry, but little blame can be laid at the feet of the NJ Republicans. They are virtually an extinct species in Navy Blue NJ. Now about “kissing up to the rich”…are YOU willing to provide the funds lost to the state by those rich people? Are you able to provide the jobs lost when they move out of state (business and personal?). Looks to me like you missed the whole point. Since the Dems have mostly been in charge of our government for decades, and cave to most, if not all union demands for the votes, we are not a good environment for business or retirement.

  3. It is not just the Democrats. The Republicans are no different, just different government supported causes. Whitman, Kean, Christi are not much different than Floria, McGreevey and Corizine. They all wanted into your pockets for their personal purposes. Vote with your feet, I did 17 years ago and haven’t looked back.

  4. The Republicans in New Jersey have not promised unsustainable benefits and raised taxes dramatically like the Democrats have…. The Dem’s and unions now want to raise gas taxes to pay for roadworks etc while we pay the most per mile. I will vote with my feet when I have saved enough to live my golden years golden….

  5. Maybe all public works who retired with a hefty pension should be forced to live in the state to help support the people and businesses who have been supporting their pensions all these years. If you want to leave you should pay an exit tax on the money you take out of the state every year just like the estate tax and the exit tax. But God forbid we touch your money . And then to make it worse you look to move to states that don’t tax your pensions. What a bunch of hypocrites!!!!!!

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