TRENTON – Leaders in the Democrat-controlled state Assembly announced that a vote to override Gov. Chris Christie’s veto of bills restoring the “millionaire’s tax” and using the revenue to restore property tax relief for seniors has been scheduled for Monday.
The bills originally passed the Assembly 46-32, along party lines. To override the governor’s veto, 54 votes are needed.
“Nothing is more important to Democrats than protecting our most vulnerable senior citizens who are struggling to pay their property taxes and keep their homes,” said Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver (D-Essex/Passaic). “Unfortunately, Republicans sided with millionaires over senior citizens, but it’s important to give them one more chance to correct their mistake. I’m hopeful they can show some independence from their governor and join what should be a shared value of protecting elderly New Jerseyans.”
An analysis prepared by the nonpartisan Office of Legislative Services reported that under the Christie plan, a retired couple living on a fixed income of $40,000 would see a $1,320 increase in taxes while a family making $1.2 million would receive a tax cut of $11,598.
The Democratic plan to protect New Jersey’s seniors calls for restoring a one-year income tax surcharge on the 16,000 New Jerseyans with taxable incomes of at least $1 million. The millionaire’s tax would raise $637 million.
Under the bill, property tax rebate checks for more than 600,000 senior homeowners and tenants would be restored to last year’s levels, providing as much as $1,295 in property tax relief to senior and disabled residents.
When Christie vetoed the bills, he stated that he would not repeat the failed, irresponsible and unsustainable fiscal policies of the past by raising taxes on the highest taxed people in the nation. Christie also pointed to New Jersey’s poor economic condition and cited the negative impact an additional tax increase would have on the state’s economic recovery and job creation efforts.
Even if the Assembly votes to override the governor’s veto, the Senate would also need to do so in order for the bills to become law.
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