With two months before the end of the legislative session, Gov. Chris Christie is traveling around the state to rally support for his 10 percent tax cut plan before lawmakers call it quits for the summer. Today, he was in Garfield at a town hall meeting to drum up support, taunting Democrats in the process.
“Over the next 60 days, you’ll hear a lot of fighting about taxes,” Christie said. “I’ll be really clear. I want to cut them, Assembly Democrats want to raise them.”
The plan faces stiff opposition from Democratic legislators who are pushing their own property tax cut plan instead. In a statement to NJ Today, Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver said, “The governor can play all the silly games he wants with a clock, but the Assembly Democrats are focused on middle-class and senior citizen property tax relief, job creation and economic fairness for hardworking families.”
At the town hall meeting, participants liked the idea of tax cuts, wherever they came from.
John Hartman from Westfield said, “I think past governors have spent too much money and I think it’s a good thing we have Gov. Christie putting a stop to all this spending.”
Carol Ferrari, a Lodi resident, said, “We need some relief. I come from a town where our property taxes are outrageous.”
Christie also used the town hall forum to push his plan to end teacher tenure and to do away with payouts for unused sick days by government officials.
But he showed his softer side when an 11-year-old boy from Point Pleasant Beach asked what he should do when a person in authority is bullying him.
The governor replied that he should first report the incident to his parents. He went onto say that “whoever that person in authority is, you need to go to that person’s boss and lay out the case as to what’s going on.”
Because the boy skipped school to meet the governor, Christie wrote him a note to give to his teacher.
Andrew Schmertz files this report from Garfield.