Business representatives and Republican legislators said today a Democratic proposal to raise taxes on the state’s wealthiest residents will damage the state’s economy.
At a news conference on the State House steps organized by the New Jersey Business and Industry Association, lawmakers said the proposal would drive wealthy residents out of the state and reduce job creation. They admitted, though, that the tax hike is unlikely to become law. Even if it passes the Democratically-controlled Legislature, it can be vetoed by Governor Christie.
Nevertheless, Republicans assailed the Democrats’ proposal, arguing it will hurt the state’s “job creators.”
“How wrong can you be?” Assembly Republican Leader Jon Bramnick, of Union County, said. “What is right about raising taxes in the highest tax state in the country?”
Democrats are proposing the tax hikes as an alternative to Christie’s plan to cut payments into the state pension system.
“We’re just asking everyone to do their fair share,” Senate President Stephen Sweeney, D-Gloucester, said at a news conference last week. “We feel this is a fair compromise.”
Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean, Jr. said the proposal “makes this a much more difficult place to live, to work, to raise a family, to get an education.”
But the Republicans agreed that the tax idea will be vetoed by the governor if it gets to his desk.
“I don’t think you have to worry about that,” Bramnick said. “I don’t think that’s going to be a problem.”