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Ingle Is Right

Bob Ingle, in yesterday’s Asbury Park Press:

Another property tax cap loophole?  Table the thought

TRENTON – Sometimes those under the Gold Dome here just can’t understand why people have lost faith in their institutions and government. A couple of recent examples of disregarding the greater public good should demonstrate it.

There was put in place, at Gov. Chris Christie’s urging, a 2 percent cap on property tax hikes, an effort to keep taxes under control a little. In order to get it through there were compromises in which some expenses could be increased more than 2 percent, such as increased pension or health care costs. That’s why the rate of increase may have been slowed but taxes continue to go up.

Now comes Assemblyman Gary Schaer, a Democrat from Passaic, suggesting a way to further erode what little progress has been made. He wants another exception to the 2 percent rule to hire cops. It’s not even about a runaway crime spree.

No, the way Schaer explains it, in his role as budget committee chairman he was approached by mayors about “a frustration that money is being left on the table” when towns decline grants that require matching funds because in order to do the match, the 2 percent cap has to be broken.

Politicians can’t help themselves. They see money and they can’t stand the idea they have to pass it up even if it is for something they don’t really need. It’s like an addiction. But it is way more stupid than that.

Community Oriented Policing Services grants from the U.S. Justice Department cover up to 75 percent of an officer’s salary and benefits for three years. After three years, the entire cost is paid for by the local government.

What happens then, do the towns come back and want more exceptions to the cap? Or do they fire the cops who have been on the job three years? You know the answer to that.

Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon told my colleague Michael Symons if voters feel there is a legitimate need to exceed the cap, they can approve exceeding the cap in a referendum. “The whole idea of the cap was to give more control over spending to taxpayers.”

That’s what these politicians fear most, serious taxpayers who will rein in politicians’ love for increased taxes and more spending. There is a way to exceed the cap if voters so desire and if Schaer and the complaining mayors had any respect for voters, they would go that route.

Nobody would tell you to buy something that you don’t really need just because it’s on sale.  So why should towns buy things just because they’re made cheaper by some grant from the state or the feds?  I complain about this kind of thing every time it happens in Belmar.

There is one big difference, however, between a store putting something on sale and a state or federal subsidy of some municipal purchase:  The store is subsidizing your purchase with its own money.  Money for grants is taken by force from other Americans.

And three cheers for Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon, who is spot on once again.  If the people want to hire more cops and are willing to pay higher taxes for it, they can have a referendum like the 2% cap allows for.

Let the citizens decide.


  1. Shrugged wrote:

    But what if D’Jais wanted Belmar to hire more cops? Can’t they just tell the council to do it, and the council would then HAVE to. If every town had a D’Jais things could get done so much faster and easier.

    Monday, December 1, 2014 at 1:01 pm | Permalink
  2. ORLY FUDD wrote:

    That is a great idea.

    Monday, December 1, 2014 at 1:37 pm | Permalink
  3. Zoe wrote:

    More cops are a good idea, however they are funded. They could use some more drug dogs too. Seems to be so many using hard drugs in town.

    How about clearing the dealers out of the hotels and ensuring that heroin does not live here.

    Monday, December 1, 2014 at 2:16 pm | Permalink
  4. Tom Dilberger wrote:


    Must respectfully disagree on the dog idea. Dogs don’t belong in a box in the back of a vehicle. If they want to put a policeman on the beat and have him walk the beat with the dog, fine. But the young policemen most likely wouldn’t walk a beat, so that kills that idea.

    Monday, December 1, 2014 at 2:58 pm | Permalink
  5. George wrote:

    That is one reason why they don’t close and secure the border. No drugs going through or illegals no work for police or ICE.

    Monday, December 1, 2014 at 3:05 pm | Permalink
  6. VITO CORLEONE wrote:

    TOM A policman should do what he is asked to do………..What the heck is wrong with you?

    Monday, December 1, 2014 at 6:05 pm | Permalink
  7. Tulip wrote:

    Well #5 It’s apparent that your theory doesn’t work. I bet that those guys have more work than they can handle.

    Monday, December 1, 2014 at 8:09 pm | Permalink
  8. Anonymous wrote:

    The one thing the drug cartels and law enforcement agree on is keeping drugs illegal. Almost all of the urban shootings are related to the illegal drug trade. Almost like when alcohol was illegal.
    There were just something like ten shootings in Newark this week.

    Monday, December 1, 2014 at 8:37 pm | Permalink
  9. Tom Dilberger wrote:


    Correct, they should do what they’re asked to do, but they won’t walk. Our young people would consider it an insult to be asked to walk a beat – I think the dog, would love it.

    Tuesday, December 2, 2014 at 5:15 am | Permalink
  10. George wrote:

    Tulip I think you misread the point was adding officers to try to combat the drug war which is a total joke with the open borders and liberal left making marijuana legal as a start to make all drug use legal.

    Tuesday, December 2, 2014 at 8:39 am | Permalink
  11. VITO CORLEONE wrote:

    TOM If a COP is asked to walk a beat and he/she does not…………..then get a cop who would walk…enough said

    Tuesday, December 2, 2014 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

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