With New Jersey flush with surplus money as the state’s Fiscal Year 2023 Budget is hammered out, the Republican members of the Senate Budget Committee released a proposal today pushing for $8 billion in tax relief as well as other amendments to Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposed budget.
“Senate Republicans have offered a detailed budget plan to make responsible use of an unprecedented $11 billion windfall of state and federal taxpayer funds to support struggling families, solve long-term problems, and ensure that New Jersey is well prepared for the next recession,” State Sen. Declan O’Scanlon (R-Little Silver), the lead Republican on the committee, said in a statement.
More specifically, the Republican proposal would allocate $4.5 billion for a pair of tax rebates, $2 billion for halting planned tax and toll hikes, $1 billion for property tax relief by increasing state aid to schools, and $790 million for structural tax reductions.
Also included in today’s announcement are proposals to grow the budget surplus to more than $5 billion in preparation for the next recession and increased oversight of certain monies that Republicans believe the Murphy administration has spent recklessly.
“If we don’t impose strict legislative oversight and discipline to effectively utilize the state’s $11 billion windfall, the Murphy administration is sure to make last year’s ‘orgy of pork’ look tame,” State Sen. Michael Testa (R-Vineland) said. “Governor Murphy will cut backroom deals to waste this money in unimaginable ways, all while New Jersey families and seniors suffer and their taxes and tolls continue to rise unnecessarily.”
Assembly Republican leaders have also issued their own proposal for lowering taxes via the budget process Earlier this week, Assembly Minority Leader John DiMaio (R-Hackettstown) and Assembly Republican Budget Officer Hal Wirths (R-Wantage) unveiled a proposal to use the state’s projected budget surplus – estimated at between $6.9 billion and $7.8 billion – to fund tax cuts and eliminate the $50,000 bracket for joint filers that created a marriage penalty.
Murphy delivered his initial address outlining his proposed budget in March, and the process is scheduled to conclude at the end of June, assuming there is not sufficient disagreement to prompt a shutdown of government. While Murphy’s budget proposals in previous years have included dramatically controversial policies, most prominently the millionaire’s tax that ultimately passed in 2020, this year’s budget is more muted and expected to pass with little issue.