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DiCICCO: Reform, Not Tax Hikes, Is The Solution

May 26, 2010

Assemblyman Domenick DiCicco

Following eight years of failed Democrat policies that have resulted in massive property tax increases, spending and debt, Assemblyman Domenick DiCicco today said the majority party’s unwillingness to fundamentally change the way government in New Jersey operates shows they are more interested in preserving self-interest than in doing what is best  for taxpayers.

“It defies reason that Democrats would rather continue to raise taxes, which, clearly, has gotten us into the mess we are in, than change course and embrace an already proven plan,”

explained DiCicco, referring to Massachusetts’ highly successful “Proposition 2.5” program.

“There’s no reason to believe Massachusetts’ program would not work just as well in the Garden State.”

            DiCicco noted the results of a joint study, Common Sense Institute of New Jersey and the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research , released this week that shows Proposition 2.5 in Massachusetts helped restrict property-tax growth, overall tax growth and per-pupil spending without harming student achievement.

“This report not only refutes those who say this cannot be done in New Jersey without compromising student achievement, but national test scores showed students public schools in Massachusetts generally outperformed their peers in New Jersey on standard assessment tests,”

he said.

“At 19,000 per student, New Jersey has the highest per pupil cost in the country. Our neighbor to the north has shown it’s not necessary to be the national leader in school spending to be the national leader in school outcomes.”

            The legislator from Gloucester and Camden counties added that the cornerstone of Governor Christie’s government reform package – two concurrent resolutions, ACR-130 and ACR-131, which would require voter approval to cap state and local spending, respectively, at 2.5 percent annually – is New Jersey’s best hope for solving the state’s chronic property tax  problem. Christie’s proposal, “Cap 2.5,” is based on the Massachusetts model. DiCicco is a sponsor of the two resolutions along with Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon, R-Monmouth and Mercer.

“Twice during the past eight years, Democrats raised taxes promising each time it was the solution to relieving high property taxes. In 2004, they implemented a tax on the state’s highest income earners and two years later, raised the sales tax following a summer-long special session on the issue,”

DiCicco said.

“Here we are six years later and homeowners are still paying the highest property taxes in the nation. Raising taxes isn’t the solution, it’s the problem. Government in New Jersey is broken and in dire need of a complete overhaul. It’s time for Democrats to either get on board or get out of the way.”

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