NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


July 6, 2006

A proposed sales tax increase from Governor Jon Corzine, from 6 percent to 7 percent, has left New Jersey without a state budget for five days and unable to pay its state workers, who include casino inspectors.  The gambling shutdown will cost the state some $1.3 million a day in lost taxes, says the Wall Street Journal.

The sales tax increase would raise about $1.1 billion annually, in a $31 billion budget.  But, it will cost the average New Jersey family about $275 a year.  Residents are unlikely to be happy about the increase, considering their state is already one of the most heavily taxed in the nation:

  • New Jersey's property tax burden amounts to $2,170 per year (per capita), and leads the nation.
  • State and local taxes cost $4,557 on average (per capita), and rank 4th overall.
  • State government debt averages $3,889 (per capita), and ranks 10th overall.
  • The top income tax rate is 9 percent, and ranks 5th overall.
  • The state ranks 49th in business friendliness.

With no one really trying to cut spending, higher taxes may be a forgone conclusion.  New Jersey voters keep electing tax-and-spendaholics, so they get what they deserve, says the Journal.

Source: Editorial, "The Jersey Boys," Wall Street Journal, July 6, 2006

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