Monday, September 18, 2006

Is tax reform even possible?

From the Daily Record:

Critics say talk bogs down progress; Democratic lawmakers urge patience

So what happens when you put a sacred cow, a third rail and an 800-pound gorilla all on a table?

So far, not much.

Nearly two months into lawmakers' efforts to curb property taxes by tackling some of New Jersey's most politically charged and expensive elements of government -- Gov. Jon S. Corzine lumped together those metaphors in a July speech to lawmakers --committee hearings have mostly resulted in dry, academic discussions that often outline what cannot be done rather than what money-saving options exist.

Some critics are frustrated at the pace of progress on the long-standing issue, but with another two months left until the Democrats' self-imposed deadline to propose their solutions, legislative leaders said last week that they are laying the foundation for reform by closely studying the complex issues involved and expect their plans to take shape over the next month -- even if the hearings might be putting people to sleep, said state Senate President Richard J. Codey, D-Essex.
William Dressel Jr., executive director of the New Jersey State League of Municipalities and one of the most vocal advocates for property tax reform, said lawmakers are learning firsthand how difficult the subject is, and he has doubts that they will have meaningful solutions in place by Nov. 15.

"There is no easy solution to dealing with a very complex problem," Dressel said. "I think they realize that there is not going to be a broad-based meaningful property tax relief served to them on a silver tray."


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Two months. Did anybody really expect to see any kind of concrete proposals after two months? If so, they are idiots.

The legislature (read Democrats) gave themselves 4 months. With luck, they'll have something together by then, but if you didn't expect boring hearings for a couple of months you really have never paid attention to what governing bodies do and how this stuff works.

I'm not very hopeful that it will be much good, but there will be something on the table in a couple of months. With luck, they call it a start and keep going, though that takes more effort and thought than most of these people can be counted on for.


9/18/2006 08:50:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only way there will be any savings is if they raise sales tax to 8%.

The unions are untouchable, and have VOWED to fight any increase in CO-PAYs, even if its is $5.

When the new sales tax reforms start on Oct. 1 people will realize what really happened.

9/18/2006 04:30:00 PM  

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