Twenety-six states currently allow "user fees"for public safety and New Jersey is one of them. Some Garden State towns are now charging the fees for things like emergency response services and trash pick-up. Governor Chris Christie says this is a way for mayors to circumvent the 2 percent cap on property tax hikes and he wants the practice banned ASAP. One influential mayor is asking the Assembly Budget Committee not to ban the fees.
Garden State Democrats claim Governor Chris Christie did not present a plan to bring down New Jersey's highest in the nation property taxes during his budget address a few days ago, but Christie insists that's "nonsense."
Ever since New Jersey's two percent property tax cap took effect a few years ago, a growing number of Garden State municipalities have been looking for creative new ways to generate badly needed revenue by implementing so-called "user fees."
Governor Christie has announced his top five priorities for the rest of this year - getting a tax cut for state residents, abolishing sick leave payouts, expanding shared services, banning municipal user fees and passing ethics reform.
Governor Christie hasn't officially announced yet that he'll seek a second term next year, but during his most recent town hall meeting in Elmwood Park, he sure sounded like a candidate running for re-election.
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