New Jersey State Senator Steve Oroho, a member of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee, issued the following statement regarding Governor Corzine’s retreat from a “temporary” elimination of the property tax deduction for every taxpayer.
“I’m relieved that the governor has partially retreated from a remarkably bad policy decision that threatened the middle class in a state with the highest property tax burden in the nation. The 10-day conversion took place only after long-suffering middle class residents made it known loud and clear that this governor could no longer ignore their needs.
“Sadly, the governor still hasn’t gotten the message that no state should raise taxes during a recession. In 2006, the governor told Gannett News Service that New Jersey’s high income taxes made the state ‘less attractive’ than Connecticut and put it at a ‘competitive disadvantage’ to Pennsylvania and Delaware. Now the governor wants to raise income tax rates to rates higher than almost every state in the nation. He also still plans to take away the property tax deduction for people, making over $150,000, who are also struggling to keep their homes during this economic crisis.
“The governor should listen to his own words. A recession is the wrong time to make New Jersey less attractive and uncompetitive to neighboring states that have been stealing our jobs for the last three years. Last year alone, 58,000 people left the state and took their incomes with them. Governor Corzine decision to raise the income tax will only accelerate the exodus of our friends and neighbors, and threaten the jobs and financial security of those who remain.
“Governor Corzine should be honest with the people of New Jersey and tell them what the true cost of his budget will be in lost jobs and future tax increases. If there were ever a time to finally end the waste, fraud and abuse in New Jersey government, it’s now. ”