Don’t Expect Your Tax Bill To Come Down Any Time Soon Under New Cap Law

tax-billA new law limits local property tax increases to 2 percent annually, but taxpayers shouldn’t expect their bills to start coming in under the cap any time soon — possibly for several years. The 2 percent property tax cap rushed into law this month by Governor Christie and state Senate President Steve Sweeney, D-Gloucester, won’t apply at all to this year’s property tax bills, and many questions remain admittedly unanswered when it comes to figuring how the new cap will work when it does go into effect for next year’s budgets.

“I think I have to straight-out tell people there’s going to be a transition period,” Christie told The Record’s editorial board on Thursday.

And Sweeney, at Tuesday’s bill-signing ceremony for the tax-cap measure in Hamilton, reminded reporters “the work is not done.”

For that reason, Christie and Sweeney are linking the cap to a series of proposed reforms designed to help the local governments deal with the major expenses that drive tax increases such as employees and their benefits.

The transition bills, more than 30 in all, are now before the state Legislature, whose leaders promise a full vetting of the package. The proposed reforms, which Christie has dubbed a “tool kit” for property tax reform, include new interest arbitration and civil service rules

The public, meanwhile, remains unconvinced even after this latest legislative step on property taxes. Less than 50 percent of those recently surveyed by the Monmouth University Polling Institute believe significant property tax reform will be enacted in the next few years.

But Christie maintains the new cap and the tool kit will work in time.

“The bills that we’ve put out there, if those bills were implemented as written, we would, I believe, wind up reducing property taxes over the course of the next decade, not just limiting their growth,” the governor said Thursday. Read more in North Jersey.

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  1. leave it up to singer he’ll find away to make the cap never works! hopefully he’ll be voted out before then and we can take our city back one brick at a time

  2. Of course it won’t go down !! Its gonna go up ! They only made a cap on how much it can go up. These people don’t understand the idea of Cutting Spending !! Every private person understands it; politicians don’t. Its crazy.

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