Mayor Corey Booker spoke out against the bloat of the NJ government, public workers, uncompetitive business environment, excessive taxes, etc… etc…
“New Jersey will go bankrupt in 10 to 20 years because we cannot afford our employees as a state,” Booker said. “I’m talking about every worker from the cities and counties to the state government. Eventually, we’re going to price ourselves out as a government or tax ourselves to death.”
“There should be a tax revolt in the state of New Jersey,” Booker said. “We’re the most inefficient state in the country. We have more government per person than we need. You would never manage a business the way we manage our government – – we have overlapping provision of services and in my opinion, it’s insane.”
This also reminds me of something I came across earlier today. The Mercatus Center at George mason University published a report ranking states based upon measures of freedom. You can get to the full report by this link. If you didn’t guess already NJ was near the bottom of the list only beat out by New York.
New Jersey is a highly regulated state all around, #46 on economic freedom, #45 on personal freedom, and #49 overall. Taxes and spending are high.
Spending on education is particularly high. Property taxes are among the highest in the country, and individual income taxes are also high. Gun control is extensive. Marijuana laws are subpar. New Jersey has primary seat-belt enforcement, motorcycle and bicycle helmet laws, a cell phone driving ban, an open-container law, sobriety checkpoints, and mandatory liability and personal injury coverage for automobiles. Fireworks are prohibited. Asset forfeiture is largely unreformed. Cigarette taxes are stratospheric, and smoking bans are as draconian as any in the country.
On the positive side, alcohol is taxed fairly reasonably, and, like Nevada, casino and slots gambling are legal statewide. More importantly, private and home school regulations are surprisingly light, extending only to broad curriculum requirements. Civil unions are also recognized. On economic regulation, labor laws are predictably costly, statewide land-use planning (“smart growth”) is in force, and there is extensive community rating for private health insurance. On other issues, however, New Jersey is about average.
Even scarier from this report is how closley we resemble Rhode Island, a state truly on the verge of collapse. See this article from the Economist
I support Mayor Booker. He is appears to be the most principled politician I have ever seen. I am not a democrat and have serious hesitation about calling myself republican, but Mayor booker appears to truly have an independant streak that I can identify with.