NJ Legislature Set To Vote On $32 Billion State Budget Monday
It’s all over but the shouting now and there will be plenty of shouting Monday when the full State Senate and Full General Assembly vote on the $31.7 billion Fiscal Year 2013 State Budget bill this Monday. Yesterday, the senate Budget Committee approved the budget bill and this afternoon the Assembly budget panel followed suit.
“That we can’t manage to find a way to provide immediate tax relief in this budget with this budget deal is a true disappointment,” says Republican Assemblyman Jay Webber. “This is a disappointing budget. I think it represents a real failure. There are 31.7 billion things Assembly Democrats would rather do than cut taxes.”
The Democrats' spending plan sets aside $183 million in surplus funds to enact an unspecified tax cut in January 2013 only if state revenues match Governor Chris Christie’s estimates.
Democratic Assembly Budget Committee chairman Vinnie Prieto says, “We all support tax cuts, but tax cuts must be focused on property tax relief and they must be ones we can afford. Irresponsible Republican tax cuts have helped create the economic morass we face in this state and nation, and we are not going to make their same mistake. Through this budget plan, we are going to live within our means and provide vital programs for middle-class New Jersey.”
“The priority of Governor Christie and Republicans in the Legislature is tax relief to reduce the burdens on families and businesses that will create jobs,” says Assembly Republican Budget Officer Declan O’Scanlon. “The legislation approved today proves that the Corzine Democrats’ priorities remain stuck in the past – the same tax and spend policies that hurt the economy, drove away jobs and dug a hole that this Governor is determined to get us out of.”
Assembly Appropriations Chairman John Burzichelli, a Democrat had this to say immediately after the budget committee hearing: “Fiscal responsibility must be our priority, and that’s what this budget plan would achieve. Everyone supports tax cuts, but they must be meaningful tax cuts focused on property tax relief and they must be paid for responsibly. Tax cuts proposed for political expediency that mainly benefit the wealthy anyway and impair the state economy’s ability to rebound would be an unwise course.”
Assembly Republican Leader Jon Bramnick is urging Democrats to, “Get with the program………The Democrats’ plan to increase taxes is a throwback to the Corzine era. New Jersey is finally on the road to an economic comeback, but the Democrats’ plan would put a speed bump in our path. After 8 years of enduring the Democrats' 115 tax increases, our residents need relief. It is time for the Democrats to reject the Corzine philosophy that a tax hike will somehow benefit our economy.”