State of Opportunity: Governor Murphey's Budget Address

Governor Murphy delivered his fifth annual budget address on Tuesday, March 8th to New Jersey legislators. The budget’s intention is clear: to ensure that New Jersey’s investments will make the state stronger, fairer, and more affordable. With this plan, the feeling of middle-class stagnation would be left behind in favor of equitable, robust possibilities that will ensure that NJ becomes the “State of Opportunity.” The budget delivers property tax relief to families, provides the highest level of school funding in history, makes pension payments, and supports significant economic investment. Over the past four years, Governor Murphy has cut taxes for the middle-class and working families 14 times.  This budget proposal resulted in the upgrading of New Jersey’s credit rating for the first time since 2005.

Governor Murphy delivered his fifth annual budget address on Tuesday, March 8th to New Jersey legislators. The budget’s intention is clear: to ensure that New Jersey’s investments will make the state stronger, fairer, and more affordable. With this plan, the feeling of middle-class stagnation would be left behind in favor of equitable, robust possibilities that will ensure that NJ becomes the “State of Opportunity.” The budget delivers property tax relief to families, provides the highest level of school funding in history, makes pension payments, and supports significant economic investment. Over the past four years, Governor Murphy has cut taxes for the middle-class and working families 14 times. This budget proposal resulted in the upgrading of New Jersey’s credit rating for the first time since 2005.

The budget plan includes a surplus of $4.2 billion, and redirects more than 70% of the total back to the people in the form of property-tax relief, social services, higher education, and aid to schools, community colleges, municipalities, and counties. The Governor has set funds to reduce the state's debt, retiring more than $3 billion in debt.

The Governor is proposing to replace the Homestead Benefit program with a new, $900 million program called ANCHOR which stands for the Affordable New Jersey Communities for Homeowners and Renters Property Tax Relief Program. The program is to benefit 1.15 million homeowners, double the amount compared to the Homestead Benefit, and expand benefits to 600,000 previously excluded renters. The benefits are based on income level, targeting those who need it most. Homeowners earning up to $250,000 a year will receive an average benefit of nearly $700 in FY2023, growing to $1,150 by FY2025. Renters earning up to $100,000 will receive a benefit of $250. The governor is also expanding the successful Down Payment Assistance Program to aid first-time buyers to purchase houses in NJ.

Affordability is central to the Democratic Platform. The proposed budget contains no new taxes or fees, for a year of “fee holiday”. This applies to fees associated with renewing licenses, marriages, and residents visiting State Parks.

For education, the budget proposes an additional $68 million for Preschool Education Aid– a step towards universal pre-K access. The budget allocates $94 million towards higher education institutions, enabling tens of thousands of eligible students to receive free tuition at public four-year institutions, and enhances accessibility to community college grants.

The budget invests in economic opportunities for all New Jersians. These include investments in the State’s workforce development pipeline, green jobs to align with the Governor’s climate goals, Main Street Recovery Fund, Black and Latino Seed Fund to ensure that nobody is left out from economic recovery, and STEM higher education funding just to start. The combination of investments in small businesses, tax cuts, and expansion of social services will ensure that NJ can provide more opportunities for social and economic growth. 

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  • Ben Olarsch
    published this page in Newsletter 2022-04-18 16:47:00 -0400
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