In today’s Star-Ledger, Assemblyman Wirths correctly highlights the inexorable rise of NJ’s property and other taxes and the insatiable appetite of the state’s special-interest-dominated status quo for more spending and more taxes. Wirth also wisely points out our state’s vulnerability to a recession. Wirths does NJ citizens a service by stating this clearly and succinctly.
As Wirths points out, Governor Murphy is all too happy to play along with the special interests – even going so far as to suggest that NJ residents should leave the state if they don’t like the high taxes. Given the reality of NJ’s out-migration problem (see SPCNJ’s recent report “Beware the Downward Spiral”), Governor Murphy’s suggestion is a recipe for disaster.
The one element that Wirths leaves out is that the most powerful force behind the push for ever-higher taxes is the most powerful special interest in the state: the taxpayer-funded NJEA. Collectively bargained local contracts drive property taxes higher every year. That’s why the NJEA used its enormous political clout to push for the introduction of the first state-level sales and income taxes. And the NJEA has been the major force behind every state-level tax increase ever since.
It’s time to point the finger at the real cause of NJ’s outsized tax burden: our special-interest-dominated status quo and the most powerful special interest of them all – the taxpayer-funded NJEA, which uses your property tax dollars to push for higher taxes on you.
Read Wirths’ full op-ed here.