Streams

NJ Budget Breakdown

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Chairman of the New Jersey Democratic State Committee, Assemblyman John S. Wisniewski (19th district), and Assemblyman Jay Webber (26th district), chairman of the New Jersey Republican State Committee, review Gov. Chris Christie’s proposal for a 2011 state budget.

Guests:

Jay Webber and John S. Wisniewski

Comments [27]

scott

@ voter from brooklyn

It's funny, those numbers match perfectly with the theory that 20% of the people do 80% of the work.

Aug. 29 2012 10:42 AM
hjs from 11211

Jennifer,
early retirement lucky u, guess life has been good to u

Mar. 17 2010 03:36 PM
Jennifer from Brick, NJ

I am so distressed by what's happening on state, national, and local levels, I have lost all confidence in President Obama, Congress, Governor Christie, the NJ legislature, and Brick's city council. The only interest each of these individuals has is in lining pockets of the rich and powerful while the rest of us are being fleeced out of existence.

A question the late Sen. Edward Kennedy asked the Massachusetts legislature one time echo in my mind again and again with each passing day, and I ask it now of elected officials who are supposed to be working for us: What do you find so offensive about ordinary citizens? Nobody has come up with an answer, yet everybody who has been empowered to serve ordinary citizens continues to ignore their needs, their wants, and their ideas.

There was a time when I wanted to use a medical administrative assistant certificate I just received last month to improve my life and that of my beloved husband so that we would have something to sustain us when he takes early retirement in a few years and we move out-of-state for good. Now, the only thing I want to do is vote every elected official in this nation out of a job.

Mar. 17 2010 03:28 PM
Tommy from West Village

If they taxed gas one penny per gallon
they wouldn't have to raise NJ transit fares.

Mass transit is the future petroleum powered cars are not. There are a million reasons to encourage mass transit and discourage auto travel.

Mar. 17 2010 12:01 PM
superf88

20/ericf

Well said, agree.

Mar. 17 2010 11:51 AM
Voter from Brooklyn

Thank you JP.
Another maxim on corporate taxation that needs to be dispelled is that the United States has the highest corporate taxes of any other industrialized first-world nation. While that may be technically true as an on paper number, with the number of loopholes, exemptions, credits, rebates, etc. the effective tax rate on American corporations is nowhere near the top. It’s a lot closer to the center.
The only reasons the taxes are so high are to compensate for the tax breaks.

Mar. 17 2010 11:09 AM
JP from NJ

Thank you voter.

I don’t care how much the rich have right out a check to pay the tax man. Do they pay the same percentage of their pay check as I do? No. How is that not fair? And then there’s the tax shelters that make sure the rich even pay a lower percentage of taxes… You can’t morally justify your paying more then me….

Mar. 17 2010 10:51 AM
ericf

one of my concerns about christie was that he might started cutting taxes before finding savings repeating the borrow and spend policies of his republican predecessors so i was somewhat relieved that the governor is pretty mostly pursuing cost cutting before tax cutting, though keeping previous tax cuts undermines that a bit.

i was annoyed at the way the speech distorted the economic history of the state, the position of the state visa vi others, and overall tax picture.

my main complain about the speech is that addressed the "what" but not the "why".

one of new jersey's main problems is that it municipal services are far too fragmented and there has been fierce resistance to consolidation. this has been a glaring problem for decades.

historically, the big tax problem in new jersey has been property taxes, not state taxes. reducing property tax relief, school aid, and municipal aid seems like a step backwards. IMHO it would be far more productive to make such aid contingent on consolidation of services, which would lead to real efficiencies and savings, but that would take some back bone.

IMHO the other two major problems have to with pensions and corruption.

christie seems to be taking on the least difficult of the three (given the recession), and pushing the balance onto the vulnerable instead of taking on the really tough items.

this seems a bit cowardly coming from a guy who ran as a brave crusading prosecutor who was gonna take the bull by the horns.

Mar. 17 2010 10:48 AM
hjs from 11211

Brian from Hoboken
why are there so many government in your country. cut there!

Mar. 17 2010 10:43 AM
hjs from 11211

Stephanie
did u know nj has 23 “nonoperating districts,” school districts without schools, yet have staffs to schedule board meetings, record the minutes and collect tax dollars to pay tuition and transportation costs for their students. they serve only 2,172 children, a tiny fraction of the state’s 1.4 million students, they cost local taxpayers a total of more than $800,000 a year in administrative expenses, including salaries and office supplies.

Mar. 17 2010 10:41 AM
Voter from Brooklyn

Chriss from NJ,
What do you think of these numbers (source, William Domhoff):
The top 1% control 42% of the nation’s wealth
The next 4% control 27% of the nation’s wealth
The next 5% control 11% of the nation’s wealth
(that means the top 10% control 80% of the nation’s financial wealth)
The next 10% control 12% of the nation’s wealth
(meaning the top 20% control over 90% of the nation’s financial wealth)
The bottom 80% control only 7% of the nation’s financial wealth
So who should pay? (and keep in mind, the bottom 80% do may more as a percentage of their income/wealth)

Mar. 17 2010 10:38 AM
hjs from 11211

how about one government for all hudson county.

how much would that save?

Mar. 17 2010 10:37 AM
Stephanie from Jersey City

There are are over 600 school districts in NJ, each of which comes with its own superintendent, assistant superintendents, business managers, attorneys, exec assistants, nurses, etc. Maryland - with a similar size and density - has 13 districts. If you look online at the Jersey City Board of Ed site, on the budget under salaries are 20 or more "special assistants" who make upward of $120k a year +benefits, including retirement. Undefined.

Mar. 17 2010 10:34 AM
Brian from Hoboken

Thank yu to the cut off caller. My division of my employer last year laid off 52% of our employees in anticipation of a drop in revenue. How can we have this conversation without public employee job cuts? Why are they immune from the reality of this economy? Ridiculous. The high earners in this state already pay the highest state income tax in the country. You can't go back to that well anymore.

Mar. 17 2010 10:29 AM
Camille Warren from East Orange

Did the Governor ask the cabinet members to take a furlough day or take a 10 % salary cuts. the only member to take a salary cuts was Attorney general Dow.

Mar. 17 2010 10:28 AM
Gladys from Bloomfield, New Jersey

Bloomfield is a completely middle-class town, from lower-middle to upper-middle. Our property taxes are extremely high, and the local elementary school is over 100 years old and in dire need of renovation. Now we have higher taxes and more school cuts to look forward to.
Nevermind the wealthy leaving New Jersey, how about the middle-class leaving en masse. I've been seriously considering it; and many of my friends have too.
Here's a solution to the deficit: cut the payola budget. Solve New Jersey's corruption problem and you'll have a surplus!

Mar. 17 2010 10:27 AM
JP from NJ

Why does a town that is 1 mile by 1 mile need its own school system, police, fire and DPW? How could this in anyway be an efficient way to run a town or anything? What other state in the union has towns that run like this? Is this the missing link for NJ having the highest tax in the country? Why is common sense thrown out the window? I’m getting the hell out of this state…

Mar. 17 2010 10:27 AM
Voter from Brooklyn

When is someone going to call Republicans on this claim that anyone making over $250,000/year is a small business owner and this Main Street mom and pop bunk. Non-private practice doctors and lawyers, professional athletes, some educators, university sports coaches, people in financial services, executives in publically traded corporations, and people living off of royalties or investment income all make over $250,000/year and aren’t small business owners.
A lot of small business owners also owe their livelihood to their proximity to NYC. If developers and landlords want to pull out of Jersey City or Hoboken and move to Nevada or Wyoming thinking they’ll still get the same returns on investment, let them.

Mar. 17 2010 10:25 AM
rich leaving? hardly from somerset county

"NJ's wealthiest are small business owners..."

I'd love to see the stats on this. please ask the guest to direct us to the website.

Here in Somerset County we don't have any small businesses left. Dairy Queen franchise owners are considered our local entrepreneurial heroes. The rich are found in 2 places: the medical/pharma industry & Wall Street Bankers. Neither group is going anywhere (until they retire). If there is a wave of rich people switching residence to Florida, obviously these wonderful people are doing so to evade tax: Those stones are keeping all their blood!

Mar. 17 2010 10:21 AM
Amy from Manhattan

Oh, here we go again. "Class warfare"? Could Webber please explain why enacting policies that benefit the rich & disadvantage the poor & the middle class is not class warfare but *pointing out* that those policies benefit the rich over the poor & the middle class *is*?

And what was so great about Reagan's budget? It ended up in huge deficits, & his corporate tax cuts created a whole lot of jobs...but overseas, the origin of "downsizing" & "offshoring."

Mar. 17 2010 10:21 AM
Chriss from NJ

Share the pain?

At least be honest and say the rich need to pay for it all.

Nationally, we know the top 10% pay 90% of the taxes.

In NJ, the number has to be close.

How much more can you tax folks?

Moreover, in NJ- the richest state in the nation- the "rich" might be a teacher (making 100k) married to a cop (making 100k).

No one considers a cop or a teacher rich.

Mar. 17 2010 10:20 AM
JP from NJ

What is the Tax rate for the rich and the rest of us? Do the rich pay the same percentage as the rest of us?

Mar. 17 2010 10:18 AM
hjs from 11211


it seems to me the highest taxed states have the lowest unemployment. is this true?

Mar. 17 2010 10:18 AM
Edward from NJ

I'm thinking of the parable of the frog and the scorpion. He can't help it. He's a Republican.

Mar. 17 2010 10:15 AM
Stacy R from NJ

The budget proposal is just cost shifting. After the cuts trickle down, where will the money for infrastructure maintenance, garbage removal, police, fire etc come from?

Also, Christie seems to be ignoring all the police and fire pensions while focusing strictly on teachers and other state and local workers.

Mar. 17 2010 10:14 AM
hjs from 11211

too bad so many NJ and NY taxes go to welfare states like alabama and north dakota!

Mar. 17 2010 10:14 AM
PTA Man from

Can you imagine good coming out of this severe process? Perhaps a review of resources is in order anyway, like cleaning out the refrigerator?

Our town's schools don't need lawns, let alone out-of-town private contractors to cut them. If lawns are absolutely necessary, let the custodians or even parents cut them. Will this crisis get folks thinking like this -- or even more radically?

Mar. 17 2010 10:05 AM

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