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Poll: Do You Back the Governor’s Tax Hikes?

When running for office, Gov. Phil Murphy talked about raising taxes — and his budget plan follows through. How do you like his proposal?

Gov. Phil Murphy didn’t shy away from talking about tax hikes while running for office last year, so it should come as no surprise that the $37.4 billion state budget plan he proposed to lawmakers last week calls for increased taxes. In all, he’s looking to bring in an additional $1.7 billion to pay for more spending on things like K-12 education, public-worker pension debt, New Jersey Transit and community-college tuition aid.

Some of the Democrat’s tax proposals come right out of his campaign platform, including a higher income-tax rate for millionaires. But others go beyond what he discussed during the campaign, like the restoration of a 7 percent sales-tax rate that was in place for about a decade before former GOP Gov. Chris Christie talked lawmakers into reducing it slightly in 2016. In the end, Murphy says his budget is all about ensuring we get good value for the taxes we pay in New Jersey.

What do you think of Phil Murphy’s budget proposal?

  • It’s about time someone showed the courage to put together a responsible state budget that tackles existing pension debt while making significant and long overdue investments in things like public education and mass transit. This is exactly what we need in New Jersey.

  • The governor didn’t go far enough; a lot more revenue should be generated from taxpayers, particularly those at the highest income levels who are doing quite well thanks to recent federal tax cuts. A wholesale restructuring of the income tax and a broadening of the sales tax should be added to Murphy’s spending plan to fund even more significant public investment.

  • I agree with Murphy’s plan to raise taxes, especially to boost funding for pensions and public education, but I was disappointed to see he did not include the corporate-tax hike that Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-Gloucester) recently proposed. We don’t need more wealthy people leaving the Garden State.

  • The budget is generally OK, but the governor should pare back some of the spending and get rid of the proposal to increase the sales tax because that would hit all taxpayers, including those in the lowest income brackets. If he wants a higher sales tax, it should wait until after he runs for re-election, and has fully explained to voters why that’s necessary.

  • There is no other way to say it — this is the wrong way to go. There will never be enough tax hikes to pay for everything, and lawmakers in Trenton simply don’t have the will to cut spending. Tax hikes are a big part of the problem, not the solution, so this budget needs to be put on a serious diet.

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