So, what are we gonna do about it?
Well, according to Gov. Corzine's budget advisory group, we have to consider expanding the state sales tax to include previously exempt sales (such as tanning salons and limo services,) implementing a temporary income tax surcharge, and:
For this fiscal year, to ensure state spending remains balanced, the group's
proposal includes requiring state departments to cut budgets, freeze work-force
levels, slice salaries of nonunion employees, mandate a week off without pay for
state workers and prepare layoff plans.
The unions flipped about the week off w/o pay. Carla Katz (you may remember her, she's president of Communications Workers of America Local 1034, the largest state employee union) said "That's a pay cut as far as we're concerned, and we would vehemently oppose a program like that." And the Repubs were quick to condemn also; "I am disappointed by the direction this report has taken. It fails to consider the consequences of adding to the tax burden on New Jersey's families." said Sen. Peter Inverso, R-Hamilton.
I'm not ready to throw stones yet. First, it's a draft report, not strong recommendation. Second, let's see what parts of it actually get proposed as law. (That temporary income tax thing will never pass- really, who believes it would actually be temporary?)
The new Governor now has to reconcile his committee's proposal with the polls showing what residents of Our Fair State want, while remembering that he has the tough decisions of who gets how much of what they want. Before the Repubs and the Unions bring out the torches and pitchforks, let's see what happens next.