Seeing right through the political rhetoric and special interest gamesmanship, Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove oppose the regressive and unconscionable 23 cent per gallon increase in the state gas tax.
Connors, Rumpf and Gove oppose the proposed 23 cent/gallon gas tax increase. (SenateNJ.com)
Connors, Rumpf and Gove made the following remarks regarding their opposition to the proposed gas tax increase:
“Simply stated, the majority of our constituents cannot afford an excessive gas tax increase and still pay their bills. They’ve seen enough of Trenton shell games to know when the state is trying to sell them snake oil, even when it’s a gas tax increase. The whole situation just doesn’t pass the smell test.
“Unquestionably, our constituents will be even more disparately impacted by the fact that there is no mass transportation in the general area. Our legislative District is largely composed of commuters living in bedroom communities who drive considerable distances to their jobs.
“More than 126,000 of our constituents are registered EZPass users, the most of any legislative district in the state. This is significant as suburban and rural area residents will be hardest hit by the gas tax increase just as they were with the Corzine toll hikes.
“In the end, our constituents won’t get a good return on having to pay more at the pump as a substantial amount of revenue from the gas tax increase will go to fund mass transportation projects primarily located in urban areas. It’ll be the same situation as State school aid. Suburban and rural residents will subsidize urban areas that will receive a windfall of funding, only in this case for mass transportation.
“Worse for our District is that recreational boaters and commercial fishermen also stand to be hit hard as well, which is sure to have a ripple effect on local economies in our area, including those still recovering from Superstorm Sandy. More broadly, the increase in fuel costs incurred by businesses will only be passed on to consumers via higher-priced goods and services.
“One proposal already considered by the Assembly included increasing the gas tax but then reducing the sales tax by a penny. Why not dedicate a penny of the existing sales tax to fund transportation projects without raising any tax? Ultimately, this will require the spending cuts that many residents are demanding as opposed to a tax increase that too many working class residents simply cannot afford.”
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