Posts Tagged ‘Jon Corzine’

 down-arrowSTATE – Gov. Jon Corzine’s $29.8 billion budget proposal relies on revenue projections that are too optimistic, according to a consensus of economic reports used by the non-partisan Office of Legislative Services to analyze it.

David Rosen, the office’s budget and finance officer, told the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee Monday that Corzine’s budget will leave New Jersey with a $100 million deficit instead of the $500 million surplus projected by the governor.

The state constitution does not allow deficit spending, so a revenue shortfall would require additional cuts to a budget that is already $3 billion less than the one approved last year.

Rosen also criticized the governor for not including a larger surplus margin in a year where revenue is extremely difficult to predict due to the bad economy. “You would want even bigger surplus than normal as a hedge,” Rosen said.


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Vas Collaborators

One Admits Guilt…

PERTH AMBOY — Jeffrey D. Gumbs, who was a top city administrator under former Mayor Joseph Vas, pleaded guilty Monday to theft, tampering with public records and the misapplication of the city’s property between April 2004 and November 2005.

Gumbs, who was the city’s director of human resources and supervisor of recreation for many years, pleaded guilty to stealing about $2,500 from taxpayers in the New Brunswick courtroom of Judge Frederick DeVesa.

Under the plea bargain, the state will recommend that Gumbs be sentenced on June 26 to probation, he must pay restitution to the city and he will be permanently barred from public employment in New Jersey.


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STATE – Gov. Jon Corzine’s draconian budget proposal has drawn a lot of criticism, but the most controversial component was the plan to eliminate the property tax deduction on the state income tax for most New Jersey residents.

Realizing that his budget had little chance of passing with that proposal intact, last week the Governor announced that he’d restore the tax deduction for residents earning less than $150,000 per year. 

“Given the circumstances, allowing people to maintain their property-tax deduction is the right thing to do and will help ease the pain for those being squeezed the most,” Senate President Richard J. Codey (D-Essex) said.


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This week’s top newsmakers


Governor Jon Corzine, Assemblyman Joseph Vas and former Assemblyman Neil Cohen sit together in this file photo featuring the week's top newsmakers.

Assemblyman Joseph Vas was indicted on 11 counts of conspiring with municipal employees to bill the city for $5,000 worth of clothing, sneakers and other personal items. The former Perth Amboy mayor is also accused of participating in a scheme to rig a housing lottery so that his driver could buy a new home at a reduced price.

Earlier in the week, former Assemblyman Neil Cohen pleaded not guilty to child porn charges and Governor Jon Corzine delivered a state budget proposal containing draconian program cuts and more than $2 billion in property tax increases.

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For the first time since April 2003, a majority of Garden Staters (51 percent) say the country is headed in the right direction, up from a low of 13 percent before November’s elections, according to the latest results from Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind.

Two in three Garden State voters (66 percent) say they approve of the job President Barack Obama is doing as President, including 89 percent of Democrats, 57 percent of independent voters and 36 percent of Republicans. Obama’s approval ratings are down slightly from measures taken before his inauguration, but are still more than triple the figures former President Bush received in his last months in office. Both liberals and moderates hold very positive views of Obama, with 86 percent and 74 percent approving of his job performance along with 41 percent of self-described conservatives.


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STATE—Gov. Jon Corzine’s standing with the New Jersey public is suffering along with the economy.

According to the most recent poll by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind, 40 percent of voters approve of the job Corzine is doing while 46 percent disapprove—a reversal from January when 46 percent approved and 40 percent disapproved. “The governor is taking his lumps along with the rest of New Jersey,” said Peter Woolley, a political scientist and director of the poll.


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TRENTON – Don’t look for a property tax rebate check this year. Unless you’re a senior citizen, it’s probably not coming.

In a meeting with the Legislature’s top Democrats next week, Gov. Jon Corzine suggested that curtailing the popular property tax rebate program may be necessary to balance the state’s budget. Last year, New Jersey spent $1.7 billion on property tax rebates; $1.1 billion went to non-seniors.

Corzine and state lawmakers emphasized the senior citizen tax rebates would not be cut. “I can’t imagine the circumstances where any of the senior rebate programs are under threat,” the governor said.


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