Kean: Lifting 2% Property Tax Cap Is Not the Answer to School Funding Cuts
Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said a proposal to lift New Jersey’s successful two-percent property tax cap is the wrong answer to counter major school funding cuts that are hitting many districts through the enactment of S-2:
“I disagree with the Senate President’s suggestion that the solution to the school funding crisis created by S-2 is to let property taxes spiral out of control as they did in the years prior to the passage of the successful two-percent cap,” said Kean. “We need to change the school funding formula in order to help school districts lower some of their largest and fastest-growing costs.”
Kean said the “Every Child Counts” school funding reform plan proposed by Senate Republicans should be part of the solution.
“Our ‘Every Child Counts’ plan eases the pain for most of the districts that have been hit hard under S-2, and it does so in a thoughtful way that’s fair for every student across New Jersey,” said Kean. “I’m especially proud of our proposed reforms to shift the cost of funding extraordinary special education fully to the State, which would relieve school districts of a major financial burden and remove a disincentive to developing better programs at the local level for our most vulnerable children.”
Kean warned that leaders shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that New Jersey already has the highest property taxes in the nation.
“Voters keep going to the polls and shooting down school budget referenda that seek to exceed the two-percent cap,” added Kean. “They’re sending a very clear message that they’re at the limit of what they can afford. Lifting the property tax cap is not the answer.”