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Who Is Going to Pay for Governor Murphy’s “Free” College Plan?

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Nothing is free, especially in a state known for being unaffordable. That’s why it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Governor Murphy’s proposal to provide “free” college tuition for two years to certain students attending in-state four-year colleges actually comes at great cost to taxpayers.

Connors, Rumpf & Gove ask how much middle-class taxpayers are going to pay for Gov. Phil Murphy’s “free” college plan when nothing is really free. (Pixabay)

This program would be in addition to the “free” community college plan already in place for some students and to the law enacted in 2018, which our delegation vehemently opposed, making illegal aliens eligible to receive tuition assistance.

There’s a catch, of course, with the Governor’s latest higher education proposal. There always is when it involves government policy which functions on taxpayer dollars.

The guarantee of “tuition-and fee-free prices” would be restricted to families making $65,000 or less would be under the Governor’s plan.  “Free” for a limited few, as opposed to lowering the cost of college for everyone seems to be his thinking.

That means a lot of middle-class families who struggle to send their own kids to college won’t be eligible for the “free” tuition plan. Rest assured, though, those families will be paying for someone else’s kid’s college tuition, because nothing is free.

“Free” seems to be the new political buzz word today, somewhat in the vein of former Governor Corzine’s favorite term, “monetization,” a policy that fell flat on its face, but more akin to the radical bureaucratic expansion agenda of United States Senator Bernie Sanders. Like many proposals these days, Governor Murphy’s plan represents the extreme end of public policy, in which his definition of fairness is based on rigid political ideology rather than the common good.

Consequently, many people are excluded under these extreme policies because “free” carries a heavy price tag for those taxpayers who actually have to pay something.  Taxpayers footing the bill for government entitlements are not so much being designated as high-income earners as they are being punished because someone else can’t pay as much for such things as college or housing.

Adding insult to injury, many of these same taxpayers struggle financially but don’t seem to ever be eligible for most, if any, government entitlements including the “free” stuff. Ironically, their financial struggles are due in part to having to pay for the cost of government entitlements so other people don’t have to.

In view of the serious fiscal issues that this state faces, Governor Murphy’s latest “free” college plan should be tabled in the interest of fiscal responsibility and restraint. Taxpayers should be treated with greater respect as opposed to being given yet one more reason to flee a state that excels at fleecing them.

That is, of course, unless you are an illegal alien, in which case Trenton is giving you every reason to relocate to or remain in New Jersey.

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Chris Connors

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