Did you know that NJ is only one of two states with both an estate and inheritance tax and that its sales and income taxes are among the highest in the nation. That its property taxes are near the top among the states and that taken collectively NJ is the highest taxed state not counting a corporate tax rate among the top five in America?
Why is that? Well, look who has run NJ over the last forty years in both the state legislature and governors. All this didn’t happen overnight.
Why bring it up now; again? You are starting to see advertising, Facebook and Twitter posts from NJ public employee unions in advance of November elections suggesting higher corporate taxes and higher taxes on the “wealthy” to help fund their benefits and pensions. NJ public unions have an inordinate amount of influence on NJ politicians, especially on Democratic politicians and they are adept at vilifying any politician who attempts to correct compensation problems. Interestingly the unions enjoy the support of many NJ citizens who have not made the connection between their burdensome taxes and the total compensation of public employees.
The fact is that in no small way the current tax burden for NJ residents is due to the generous (when compared to private sector workers) total compensation package for state and local town workers. Much of that is in the hidden paycheck, the value of pensions, health care and other benefits generally non-existent for most private sector workers. A recent release by the US Department of Labor shows state and local government workers have total compensation forty-one percent higher than other workers.
So New Jersey, keep vilifying the likes of a Christie who defies the unions, or continue to drive our corporate tax base out of the State or simply pay higher and higher taxes. It’s not all that complicated.