The four Republican members of the Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee said Governor Phil Murphy’s revised budget plan for FY 2021 is little changed from the pre-COVID budget he proposed in February, except for the addition of billions in borrowing.
The four Republican members of the Senate Budget Committee said Governor Phil Murphy’s revised budget plan for 2021 is little changed from the pre-COVID budget he proposed in February, except for the addition of billions in borrowing. (Pixabay)
They said he continues to oversell the fiscal impact of the coronavirus on the State’s finances, while ignoring opportunities to help taxpayers and get people back to work.
Senator Declan O’Scanlon (R-13):
“With the State credit card in his pocket, Governor Murphy’s budget plan shows none of the fiscal restraint that virtually every family and small business has been forced to exercise due to the coronavirus. He wants to borrow billions, which will compound to billions more in interest and fees, to support a budget that demonstrates not one shred of creative cost-cutting reform. Generations of taxpayers will be saddled with this burden. In the end, this budget is little changed from what he proposed spending before COVID hit when State revenues were still growing. Today, however, it just seems tone deaf to propose spending so much when the people of New Jersey are struggling to pay their bills.”
Senate Republican Budget Officer Steven Oroho (R-24):
“It’s disappointing that the governor isn’t pursuing tax fairness with New York as part of his budget proposal. It’s not every day that we have the opportunity to lower taxes for hundreds of thousands of New Jerseyans while generating potentially billions in new tax revenues for the State. As an alternative to the borrowing and tax increases the administration has proposed for increasing spending in the State budget, this would seem to be a no-brainer. I’m not sure why the governor refuses to consider the fiscally responsible solutions we’ve proposed.”
Senator Sam Thompson (R-12):
“Governor Murphy continues to suggest that New Jersey is in such a dire fiscal situation that we have to beg, borrow, and steal from future generations to increase spending in the State budget. All of the revenue data we’re seeing, however, tells a completely different story. Even with the impact of COVID-19, the State is collecting just as much in taxes as it did last year. The Governor’s plan to tax and borrow seems designed to pad the budget and allow the administration to embark on a spending spree as we head into an election year. He should allow indoor dining like 47 other states, which would improve state revenues in a responsible manner while helping the 40% of unemployed workers from the hospitality industry to get back to work.”
Senator Michael Testa (R-1):
“We have seen how resilient the State’s financial picture has been despite Governor Murphy’s insistence on keeping important segments of the New Jersey economy unnecessarily locked down for too long. His decisions have had a disproportionate impact on low-wage, minority, and female workers who have been hit the hardest. If the governor would allow industries still subject to unreasonable restrictions, including restaurants, to implement their plans to reopen safely as they have in many other states, we could get hundreds of thousands of New Jerseyans back to work. With more of the New Jersey economy reopened, State revenue trends suggest we would have enough money to balance the budget without the need for all of the borrowing Governor Murphy has proposed.”