EWING – Gov. Chris Christie said that Tuesday’s elections show that the 2 percent property tax cap is working as intended.
In Medford, where voters approved a tax hike of more than 2 percent, Christie said, “The tax cap always was meant to say that the only people who could raise taxes were the people who were paying it.”
As for Medford voters, he said, “They must think their local officials made their case to them’’ for a tax hike.
As for towns like Lawrence Township, which voted down a tax hike, local officials can’t blame the state for their problems. He said the municipal officials were elected to do a job and they should do it.
Christie touched on several other issues at a press conference today in Ewing where he announced an initiative to combat homelessness.
Fiscal year 2013 budget
He said that once these ongoing legislative budget hearings are concluded, and he said they tend to accomplish little, the real work will begin.
Christie said that he will sit down with Senate President Steve Sweeney and Speaker Sheila Oliver and they will hammer out a budget.
“I’m hopeful we’ll be able to negotiate a budget this year,’’ he said, as opposed to last year when the Democratic-controlled Legislature passed a budget that he line-item vetoed “to bring it to fiscal sanity.’’
Affordable housing funds
Regarding housing advocates who oppose the state taking over a portion of the $200 million in affordable housing trust funds, approximately $160 million, Christie said that the advocates “knew this deadline was coming.’’
“They haven’t spent this money,’’ he said of many towns; “we’re going to spend it on housing across New Jersey.’’
He said those who oppose the state takeover of the funds are still wedded to the Mount Laurel affordable housing court decisions and the Council on Affordable Housing way of doing things.
“This has been going on for years and years,’’ he said. “We’re not waiting any more for people to get their act together.’’