“Let Them Pull the Trigger”
He said consolidation to make government more efficient could produce "a more natural sharing of both responsibilities and mixing of our children."A “natural sharing” of resposniblities is defined as higher taxes for those already paying the lion’s share at federal, state and local levels. The “mixing of our children’ concept is thrown in there to lay the ground work for calling anyone who opposes this power and money grab a racist. Nice try, but the race card has been overplayed.
Expert after expert has testified before state property tax committees that county school consolidation would not bring about meaningful cost reductions and might well increase costs. As we have repeatedly pointed out - the 31 Abbott school districts already have the advantages cited by the champions of county school consolidation – from centralized administration to transportation. Yet, the 31 Abbott school districts spend an average of 30 percent more per student as compared to the rest of the state.
For example, taken as a total, Somerset County school districts are much less costly and more efficient than the Newark school district on every measure. Newark’s average cost per student is 39 percent higher and administrative costs are 65 percent greater than Somerset County’s.
Democrats aren’t willing to admit where the inefficiencies are occurring in New Jersey’s education system even though the evidence is overwhelming. The state’s Abbott school districts are the definition of wasteful and inefficient – pathetic student achievement while spending more than any other schools, not just in the state, but in the entire country.
The Abbotts are gobbling up 56 percent of school property tax relief while accounting for just 22 percent of the state’s student population. State income tax revenue, funds that may only be used for property tax relief, has increased 61 percent since 2003. Yet, property tax relief has not increased for all but the Abbotts and a few other special cases. Inequitable allocation of property tax relief is one of the major problems that must be solved if we want meaningful property tax reductions.
Democrats know these facts, but are looking to keep the gravy train rolling under the pretext of “property tax reform” and now “diversity”. They’ve tapped out state taxes so it’s on to the local governments they don’t control and the big jackpot – property tax revenue. Just think what the politicians and their buddies could do with control of 21 consolidated county school districts and $20 billion in property taxes. Sen. Bob Smith (D-Middlesex), co-chairman of the Joint Legislative Committee on Government Consolidation said:
"Put the decision in the hands of the citizens and let them pull the trigger."The tax eaters - urban voters and public employee union members – are itching to pull that trigger. Tax shifting, by way of bribes or at the point of a gun, will not reduce property taxes. It’s time for taxpayers to disarm these Mafia-like dons and their band of thieves. Hold politicians accountable for the waste, fraud and abuse of taxpayer dollars in the urban centers - then watch your property and state tax bills decline.