The Energy Tax and CMPTRA funding are meant to be municipal resources. Over many years, the Treasury of the State of New Jersey has developed a dependency on these municipal resources. It’s a bad habit. Recovery will not come easily. Some doubt if the state will ever be able to do it. But over the past two years, we have seen a
bipartisan commitment to fiscal self-discipline on many other issues. And so, we believe that now is the time to begin.
Thanks to the efforts of League First Vice President, Mayor Janice Mironov of East Windsor, and the members of our Energy Tax Restoration Task Force, many in the Legislature agree. Last spring, on a bipartisan basis, both Houses passed a bill that would begin to restore dedicated property tax relief dollars to local budgets.
To be clear, the bill would not have restored all the property tax relief funding that should have been distributed; nor all of the funding that could have been distributed. It would, however, provide taxpayers in every municipality in the state with the same level of relief they received in 2007.
The restoration of the $331 million needed to return to that level would be accomplished over
New Jersey’s next five fiscal years.
Unfortunately, the bill was vetoed.
The State Treasurer and Executive Branch departments and agencies have begun to prepare for the state’s next fiscal year. We will ask the Governor to direct them to include municipal property tax relief funding restoration in their plans. We know that Assembly Speaker Oliver and Senate President Sweeney support the restoration. We urge you to contact your state legislators to do the same.
It may be tough to do it. But it is the right thing to do.
Editorial from New Jersey
Municipalities, Volume 89, Number 8, November 2012