NJ Transportation Fund – How would you replenish it?
In case you weren’t watching, here’s a brief summary of Governor Christie’s Budget Address:
The upcoming budget is to be 33.8 billion dollars with no new taxes imposed. It’s less by 2.3 billion that had been put in place in 2008.
Of that 33.8, the Governor sets aside 2.2 billion for higher education, aside from monies that will be set aside for primary and secondary education to the tune of over $12.7 billion.
He also is looking to fund new initiatives in single point of entry drug addiction programs – including drug courts.
Plus other initiatives – all while projecting an increase in revenue of 3.8 with no new taxes.
The main thrust of the speech is that most of the money in the budget is eaten by pensions, health benefits and debt…and to that end he’s proposed making a 1.3 billion dollar payment to pension system – which he touts as having been the biggest contribution to pension system thusfar.
Altogether he’s contributed 4.2 billion dollars during his term that the 5 previous governors have, who’ve all funded about 3.8 billion in total. (Makes for a nice presidential soundbite if you asked me!)
In addition, the Governor has touted an accord made with the NJEA by his nonpartisan New Jersey Pension and Health Benefits Study Commission to come up with creative recommendations for making the system reliable for the beneficiaries but manageable for the state.
The NJEA says it’s not an agreement, but merely a roadmap.
Yet nothing about the Transportation Trust Fund!
In July, the fund runs out of money, and the only thing left will be to pay down existing debt.
Do you not feel it needs to be replenished? Does he not feel it needs to be replenished.
Ahhh Danielson, but how to do that?
Increase the gasoline tax? Impose a millionaire’s tax? Or cut the budget even more – perhaps paring down the contribution to the pension fund; contributions to education and drug counseling programs – all seemingly non-starters for the Governor.
Could you imagine what a "bordello'" that would cause if any of those promises were not kept.
I guess we'll have to wait and see which shoe drops first - or, God forbid, which bridge drops first!
How would you propose replenishing the Transportation Trust Fund?
And oh, by the way, he’ll be in studio tomorrow night for another round of Ask the Governor. If you’re so moved, you can ask him yourself.