Budget chairman and treasurer clash over property tax relief

TRENTON – A prickly flare-up ensues involving state Sen. Paul Sarlo (D-Wood-Ridge), chair of the budget committee, and Treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff (pictured)

“We take that $1.5 billion, $447 million, $848 million in rebates, that equals $2.8 billion in property tax relief cuts, is that correct?”

“The math part is okay,” says the treasurer.

“I characterize it as property tax relief cuts based on the nonpartisan Office of Legislative Services,” Sarlo says.

Sidamon-Eristoff objects, offering the inclusion in the budget of other programs or allocations, including a property tax freeze for disabled seniors.

The property tax relief cuts actually equal $805 or $806 million, says Sidamon-Eristoff.

Sarlo drums the treasurer on what he’s convinced is a property tax hike on municipalities.

“I don’t believe a cut in formula aid necessarily has to translate into a one for one rise in property taxes,” fires back the treasurer, arguing for more local-level constraints. “That would be an abrogation of responsibility by local managers.”

Budget chairman and treasurer clash over property tax relief