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Tax Reform Efforts in New Jersey Finding Relief

Few subjects get people as riled up as taxes. Whether it's sales tax, income tax, estate tax or property tax, the thought of the taxation can infuriate and perplex. If not for taxes, after all, we would likely be speaking with British accents, swearing fealty to the Queen.

It's easy then to understand the emotional debates that have been going on in New Jersey for years regarding the issue of property taxes. New Jersey has been at or near the top of the list when it comes to how much individual residents pay in property taxes each year. According to the New Jersey Tax Foundation, New Jersey residents are 10th in the nation for overall tax burden.

When it comes to property taxes however, New Jerseyans pay till it hurts—to the tune of an average $5,991 in property taxes per household annually.

Also, according to the New Jersey Tax Foundation, New Jersey is one of the 37 states that collect property taxes at both the state and local levels. In fiscal year 2004, (the most recent year for which the Census Bureau published state-by-state property tax collections) New Jersey's localites collected $18.2 billion in property taxes, along with $3.6 million in property taxes at the state level. Thus, New Jersey's combined per capita property tax collections were the highest in the nation.

Where Everyone Stands

This year, Governor Jon Corzine and legislators worked to put together a package that will provide a 20 percent property tax rebate for homeowners. On April 3rd, Corzine signed into law, A1/S20, intended to provide homeowners with immediate and substantial property tax relief.

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