Cumberland County to Raise Property Taxes

It may be in a pretty little box, but it’s still a tax increase.

Cumberland County Freeholder Bill Whelan announced that a 1.4¢ tax increase is coming.

“I think we need to maintain the levy at last year’s level — which means we need an increase of 1.4 cents,” Whelan said, adding, “I don’t think people are in the mood for more.”

The quotation is telling on many levels.

First, it’s a tax increase. Just the other day Governor Christie announced there would be no tax increases in New Jersey this year. Sure, he was talking about state taxes. Taxpayers do not differentiate.

Second, notice how Whelan acknowledges that taxpayers are not in the mood for raising taxes . . . as he announces a tax increase. That’s audacity!

Third, Whelan is firmly in the “government workers” camp I discussed the other day. Whelan “thinks” we “need” to raise taxes to keep the machine rolling budget balanced. Of course, cutting spending would accomplish the same result.

Instead of keeping the levy at the same amount, how about freeholders keep the tax bill for the taxpayer at the same amount as last year? It’s a difference of keeping the machine running and consideration for the taxpayers.

Finally, The Daily Journal buries the tax increase under the heading Cumberland prepares to lay off 23 employees. Layoffs are news . . . as are tax increases.

I’m not in the mood for a tax increase this year under any circumstances.

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