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Reynolds-Jackson & Verrelli Bill to Restore Transitional Aid to Trenton & Paterson Clears Assembly
Transitional Aid was taken out of FY2019 Budget by Murphy Administration
(TRENTON) - Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Verlina Reynolds-Jackson and Anthony Verrelli (both D-Mercer/Hunterdon) to restore transitional aid funding to Trenton and Paterson that was removed from the FY19 state budget via line-item veto by Gov. Phil Murphy was approved Thursday by the General Assembly.
The bill (A-4350) would restore $36 million in transitional aid to Trenton and Paterson that was removed from the FY19 budget. Under the bill, Trenton would receive $9 million and Paterson $27 million. This would increase Trenton's total municipal aid to $67.9 million and Paterson's to $59.9 million, the same funding levels they received the previous year.
The bill does not require a supplemental appropriation, and would have no net impact on the current FY19 budget.
"This funding gap can hurt taxpayers in Trenton and Paterson who may be stuck making up the difference. With this bill, we can help prevent that," said Reynolds-Jackson. "This is funding that these municipalities have consistently received in the past, and rely on to balance their budgets and fund the functions of municipal government. It should be restored."
"Municipalities like Trenton and Paterson depend on these funds to maintain municipal services and lessen the tax burden on their residents," said Verrelli. "It is critical that we mend this and restore this funding so taxpayers in these municipalities are not on the hook for it."
The FY 2019 budget passed by the Legislature in the summer provided the increase in Consolidated Municipal Property Tax Relief Aid (CMPTRA) to Newark, Paterson and Trenton. The governor line-item vetoed the budget in a way which automatically allowed for the transitional aid awarded to Newark in calendar year 2017 to be incorporated into Newark's Fiscal Year 2019 CMPTRA distribution, but not for Trenton and Paterson, which meant they would have to reapply for transitional aid.
This bill would amend the FY19 budget, consistent with the Legislature's intent, to provide that the transitional aid received by Trenton and Paterson would automatically be incorporated into their CMPTRA payments in the same manner provided for Newark.
The bill was approved 52-25-2 by the Assembly and now heads to the Senate for further consideration.
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