NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — New Jersey property taxes are the highest in the country — a big concern for voters.
Gov. Phil Murphy says he has the solution.READ MORE: New York Making Push To Vaccinate College Students On Campuses
But do his fellow Democrats support it?
Tax relief for homeowners, or a millionaire’s tax — Murphy wants to play let’s make a deal with competing Democrats by offering them $250 million for the former if they agree to the latter.
“We are proud of budget we presented and happy that the results this fiscal year are somewhat better than we thought,” Murphy said.
This added tax on the wealthy did not get passed last year. The worry was that high earners would be driven away and the middle class would be left with an even bigger burden.
Senate President Steven Sweeney blasted the idea.
“We need a real budget with long-term, sustainable property tax savings, not gimmicks,” Sweeney said.READ MORE: 2-Year-Old Shot In The Head In Newark
CBS2’s Meg Baker put that to Gov. Murphy, reminding him of Sweeney’s comments and then asking if he can offer property tax relief without the millionaire’s tax contingency.
“No, I don’t think it’s gimmick to ask 19,000 people who can afford to pay it to fund property tax relief for millions in the middle class. I don’t think that’s a gimmick. That’s good policy. That’s good math,” Murphy said.
Political pundit Jim McQueeney said he’s baffled that Democrats wouldn’t immediately agree to this sweetened deal.
“A Democratic leader in the state Legislature is trying to block $250 million worth of tax reform for helping property taxes get lower. I can’t figure that one out and I’m a political analyst,” McQueeney said.
Murphy’s plan would raise the rates on incomes over $1 million from 8.97 percent to 10.75 percent. The budget must be agreed upon by June 30.MORE NEWS: De Blasio Says Solution To Spike In Gun Violence Is Courts, Economy And COVID Recovery; Security Expert Throws 'The BS Flag' On That
Senate President Sweeney has instead proposed pension and benefit reforms to help fund property tax relief.