New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s effort to cut the state income tax would provide minimal relief to middle-class families, according to the state’s nonpartisan Office of Legislative Services, the Newark Star-Ledger
reported Tuesday. The plan would reduce taxes by 10 percent over three years.
Christie’s proposal would “provide only modest relief to middle-class families” who pay more than wealthier state residents in property taxes than they do in income taxes.
“The governor’s plan would largely benefit the state’s wealthier residents, who pay a significantly higher [income tax] rate under the state’s current progressive tax system, and so they would see greater savings,” the newspaper said, referring to the analysis.
State Democratic lawmakers seized on the analysis as evidence that the governor’s proposal would “shortchange the middle-class,” the Star-Ledger noted, adding that the Democrats are planning to introduce their own tax-relief measure aimed at reducing not only income taxes but higher property taxes as well.
“We all want to cut taxes, but we want to cut the right taxes in ways that help those most in need and that provides the most benefit to the economy,” the newspaper quoted state Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee Chairman Paul Sarlo as saying.
State Republican lawmakers, however, rushed to Christie’s defense, calling the Democrat’s counter-proposal “a knee-jerk reaction.”
Republican state Sen. Kevin O’Toole told the Star-Ledger that “history shows” that cutting income taxes over time actually leads to more job creation, which in turn results in more income tax revenues.
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