Author: max

Not finding $25 million in transitional aid, Caputo says Baraka 'should be congratulated not punished'

Not finding $25 million in transitional aid, Caputo says Baraka 'should be congratulated not punished'

TRENTON – A lawmaker who represents Newark is pained by the early iterations of a budget that does not give the state’s biggest embattled city the boost he says it needs.

Assemblyman Ralph Caputo (D-28) and other members of the Essex County delegation sought $25 million in transitional aid for Newark.

That allocation is not in the $34.1 billion budget that both houses will consider today.

“We’re looking for that transitional aid,’ said the veteran Caputo (pictured, above right, with Essex County Democratic Chairman Leroy Jones). “We’re going to fight for that money. They have the responsibility to help this city. Ras Baraka should be congratulated instead of punished. If it’s all about getting even, what does that say to the citizens of Newark?”

Read More >

CD2: Hughes bothered by UAW's withdrawal of support; charges influence of D.C. lobbyist

CD2: Hughes bothered by UAW's withdrawal of support; charges influence of D.C. lobbyist

It initially appeared that the United Auto Workers (UAW) had jump-started Bill Hughes' CD2 candidacy.

But as it turned out, they deflated the Democrat's tires and tossed his car keys in the river.

The former federal prosecutor running against labor-connected incumbent U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-2) today responded to the UAW's retraction of last week’s endorsement of his campaign.

Read More >

Schaer: faced with obligation, all the governor is saying is 'I'm not paying'

Schaer: faced with obligation, all the governor is saying is 'I'm not paying'

TRENTON – Assembly Budget Chairman Gary Schaer (D-36), Passaic, said Gov. Chris Christie’s criticism of the Democrats’ proposed FY2015 budget obscures the central fiscal issue that New Jersey faces.

Christie this morning told a town hall forum crowd that there’s “no more candy” to dispense.

“The governor’s obviously right,” said Schaer, hours after gaveling out his committee that passed the Democrats’ $34.1 billion budget. “There’s no candy. But that’s not the issue. The problem is our Republican colleagues are not confronting the issue. The issue is how you meet the budget shortfall. No Democrat wants new taxes but no Democrat wants continued fiscal irresponsibility. Not meeting our pension obligation this year will cost New Jersey $5 billion more.

Read More >

Senate Budget Committee releases S-2015: the Democrats' $34.1 billion budget

Senate Budget Committee releases S-2015: the Democrats' $34.1 billion budget

TRENTON – Voting on party lines, the Senate Budget Committee tonight released a $34.1 billion budget for the 2015 fiscal year, a document that is $302 million less than the governor’s proposed budget, boasted Budget Chairman Paul Sarlo (D-36) by way of introduction.

"This is a difficult budget," the chair said. "We did present options. Those options were rejected."

In anticipation of their uniform floor opposition to the Democratic budget, Republicans on the committee were unconvinced by the bill, which contains tax hikes on upper income earners and a corporate business tax - a total $1.1 billion tax hike.

"The increase in the income tax, that projection was [initially] $675 million," said a skeptical state Sen. Jen Beck (R-11). "That number is $724,500,000. Is there some reason for a significantly high projection for an income tax increase?"

Read More >

Van Drew votes yes on millionaires' tax

Van Drew votes yes on millionaires' tax

TRENTON - State Sen. Jeff Van Drew (D-1) joined his Democratic colleagues in voting in favor of the millionaires' tax to turn the bill out of the Senate Budget Committee with all eight Democrats voting aye.

"This is not my favorite bill in the world but I voted for it before and I am voting for it again," said the Democratic caucus' most conservative member. "We're concerned about losing anyone in New Jersey - the middle class and lower income working folks. The only ones who got a break were the millionaires, when this tax sunset."

Read More >

Assembly Budget Committee releases Democrats' millionaires' tax bill

Assembly Budget Committee releases Democrats' millionaires' tax bill

TRENTON - The Assembly Budget Committee passed on party lines a bill by by Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-32) and Majority Leader Lou Greenwald (D-6) to change the state's gross income tax rate from 8.97 percent to 10.75 percent for the wealthiest roughly 16,000 taxpayers with taxable incomes exceeding $1 million, restoring it to its 2009 level for a temporary three-year period over taxable years 2014, 2015 and 2016.

The bill forms the crux of the Democrats' budget plan alternative to Republican Gov. Chris Christie, which the governor is expected to veto.

“This legislation will restore shared sacrifice, a notion that has been extinct since the first budget of the Christie administration,” said Prieto.  “This is a responsible plan that meets our legally-mandated fiscal obligations and provides much-needed relief for those struggling the most by asking just a little more from the most fortunate among us.”

Read More >

Budget Debate: previously kicked-around bill resurfaces repackaged in 11th hour

Budget Debate: previously kicked-around bill resurfaces repackaged in 11th hour

TRENTON – The Senate Budget Committee this evening considered an amended bill (A-3459 in the Assembly) that at least one Statehouse veteran identified as a probable critical part of what Democrats hope to advance in exchange for Gov. Chris Christie ultimately having his way with the budget.

The bill, sponsored by state Sen. Jim Beach (D-6) in the Senate and Assemblyman Troy Singleton (D-7) in the Assembly, extends the application period for certain urban hope projects, permits reconstructed facilities as part of projects; and provides additional retirement benefits for certain PERS (Public Employees Retirement System) and TPAF (Teachers Pension and Annuity Fund) members in urban hope districts, and makes projects eligible for tax credits.

Read More >

Sources: game of 'chicken,' unsurprisingly bereft of drama

Sources: game of 'chicken,' unsurprisingly bereft of drama

TRENTON – Fidgety members of the Democratic caucus fret that a deal between Gov. Chris Christie and Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) has already been cut, which explains the lack of dramatic intensity in a public game of chicken, sources say.

But the worry doesn’t really run too deep.

“They always play this game, it’s so hilarious,” said a source.

At least one member of the Democratic caucus in the lower house expressed dismay over the absence of Democratic leadership carrying a sustained critical message to Christie, who is committed to striking down the Democrats’ proposed tax hike.

Read More >

Sarlo, other budget committee members to take up budget discussion at 3 p.m.

Sarlo, other budget committee members to take up budget discussion at 3 p.m.

TRENTON – Senator Paul Sarlo (D-36), chair of the Senate Budget Committee, will drop the gavel on a special 3 p.m. meeting of the Senate Budget Committee.

“We’re going to reconvene to re-evaluate and hopefully we will have a budget later this afternoon,” Sarlo told PolitickerNJ.

“We’re down to some minor spending items and some budget language,” the senator added.

Read More >

Sources: Essex delegation seeks meeting with Christie in midst of budget unease

Sources: Essex delegation seeks meeting with Christie in midst of budget unease

TRENTON - When Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo publicly backed the re-election of Gov. Chris Christie over the ear-chewing of fellow Democrats who begged him to stay neutral, Joe D’s allies had a simple retort.

Come budget time, Essex would enjoy some generous payback from the front office as a consequence of DiVincenzo’s embrace of the GOP incumbent.

Now that time has arrived, with New Jersey in the middle of a budget crisis, South Jersey and Hudson County angling hard to prove dominance as a consequence of legislative leadership, and Newark in a $93 million budget hole.

Read More >

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: July 23rd

Between RGA gigs, Christie doesn't skip a beat bashing Trenton Dems at seaside LGI town hall LONG BEACH ISLAND – Gov. Chris Christie squeezed LBI between trips to IowaNew HampshireConnecticut and – tomorrow – Colorado – just long enough to puncture his favorite Trenton-based targets in front of a...

Op-Ed

Legislation needed to restore balance in election financing

By JEFF BRINDLE Much has been written about the magnitude of campaign spending by independent special interest groups.  But until now, there has been little discussion about the impact. During the 2012 Presidential and Congressional contests,... Read More >

Contributors

 The following letter was sent today to Republican state legislators, county chairs, state committee members, and New Hampshire... more »
(7-23-14) Rabner Opinion Keeps “Christie for President” Alive - Gov. Chris Christie’s fight to prevent same-sex marriage in New Jersey ended with Chief Justice Stuart Rabner.... more »
The Perry-Paul Debate is Healthy for the GOP – and for America  The foreign policy debate in the media between prospective GOP Presidential candidates Texas Governor Rick Perry and... more »
(Washington DC)-- Two recent votes on Capitol Hill suggest an overdue and radical departure from our nation's Draconian and costly War on Drugs.  It's a long-overdue discussion (and not just... more »

Quote of the Day

quote of the day

“We lived up to our end of the bargain. He didn’t live up to his end of the deal.” - Ed Connolly, president of the New Jersey Firemen’s Benevolent Association.

- The Bergen Record

Poll

Who's right on the death penalty?:

Blogroll

Visit the PolitickerNJ.com/resources page for links to the best collection of information on New Jersey state government.

 

  • Polls
  • The best blogs
  • Columnists
  • State election results
  • Assembly election results
  • Local party websites
  • And more.

PolitickerNJ.com/resources