Although the housing market struggled mightily the past couple of years, Office of Legislative Sesrvices director David Rosen predicts there will be some increases in realty tax transfers.
Revenues from that particular tax plummeted by more than 60 percent since 2008, he said Tuesday before the Assembly Budget Committee.
However, Rosen predicted that there would be “modest growth” in realty transfer fees.
“People are selling houses they’re stuck with,” he said.
Despite the positive projection, at least one legislator believed more could have been done.
Assembly Budget Committee Chairman Louis Greenwald, (D-6), of Voorhees, said his five-year, $100 million “homebuyers tax credit” bill would have at least provided some stimulus, but was ultimately unsuccessful due to partisan politics.
He said unlike neighboring states, New Jersey’s home sales remained weak due to the high property taxes.
However, Assemblyman Anthony Bucco Jr., (R-26), of Boonton, said Greenwald’s plan assumes rosy scenarios in order for the state coffers to see additional money. He said there’s always a chance the economy and consumer-driven sales, which Greenwald said his legislation would encourage, would not materialize significantly.
“We need to prepare for them (incidentals) in case we don’t,” Bucco said about projections falling short. “That’s what sound fiscal planning is all about.”
Greenwald countered that if someone is renovating a home they just purchased, they would inevitably need to purchase supplies to do the work.