When I was a kid and either dragging my feet because I wanted to put off going to bed, or avoid visiting someone I sorta hated…I was often told by parentals and the like “let’s get this show on the road.”
It was an apt metaphor because big productions ( like circuses and musicals ) sometimes travel, and in many cases I was literally putting on a show ( can you believe I was a slightly theatrical child who was also incredibly stubborn? Well, me neither! ).
Governor Christie is also taking the show on the road, in a matter of speaking. He was in Hoboken on Monday to sell the idea to taxpayers that a hard 2.5% cap will control the runaway growth in local government by keeping property taxes manageable.
It’s a show because it plays to his strengths. Christie is very good on his feet, and he relates well to the public. It’s also a show because in this case, the media was invited to watch but not to ask any questions.
Here are the numbers. Assuming the average property tax in New Jersey is $7200 per year. And the average tax went up 3.3%. That means that a hard 2.5% cap would only have resulted in $90 in savings for the average home last year. Not nothing of course, but certainly ( as one Democratic lawmaker says ) not “the panacea” the hard cap has been made out to be.
When you couple the $90 in annual savings with a loss of a rebate check, it actually doesn’t do much to ease the burden households can expect next fiscal year.
The Christie Administration would argue that it is not a one-time fix…and that a hard cap will result in savings year after year by forcing local governments to live within their means.
Getting municipalities to trim their budgets and restrain their excessive growth??? Now THAT is a show worth watching. I might even DVR it.