Corzine Holds Out For Taxes Increses
In a move to make New Jersey more affordable, Governor Jon Corzine has shut down state government until lawmakers approve his budget plan to increase state spending by $2.6 billion and taxes by $1.8 billion. New Jerseyans oppose increasing taxes by a 2-1 margin.
"We will end up phasing down the operations of the state until people come to their senses," Corzine said.Governor Corzine signed an executive order this morning stopping all but essential government services. About 45,000 state non-essential employees were immediately furloughed, but the order allows Corzine to keep about 36,000 essential state employees working during the crisis.
Corzine could force Atlantic City's 12 casinos to close because they require state monitoring, though the casino industry is challenging that in court.
The theory is that casinos need state inspectors to operate, and these inspectors aren't considered essential personnel. The catch is that those inspectors are paid for by casinos — not state taxpayers.Joseph A. Corbo, Jr. president of the Casino Association of New Jersey said, “We believe that it would be counterproductive for the state, in a budget crisis, to close businesses that generate millions in tax revenues, particularly since we directly pay for the state employees who regulate our casinos."