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Beach, Greenwald & Lampitt: Christie’s Cuts to 6th District Town Aid Mean Less Services, Public Safety Layoffs, Higher Property Taxes

(CHERRY HILL) — Today Senator James Beach, Assembly Majority Leader Louis Greenwald and Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt (all D-Camden) drew sharp comparisons between municipal aid levels in Governor Christie’s proposed budget, noting that most 6th District towns have actually seen a net cut under Christie. These cuts have taken the form of reduced services, layoffs of police, fire and other municipal employees and higher property taxes.

“Municipal aid is not only one of the most important forms of property tax relief the state provides, it also allows towns to fund critically needed services and programs, like public safety,” said Beach. “Despite its vital importance, the Governor has chosen to drastically reduce municipal aid during his time in office — to the detriment of 6th District communities.”

“Whether it’s slashing municipal aid, massive cuts to school aid, or cutting property tax relief while giving tax breaks to millionaires, it’s clear Governor Christie has given up on providing real property tax relief to the middle-class,” said Greenwald. “By cutting municipal aid, Christie has forced towns to lay off key personnel — including critical police officers, firefighters and emergency workers — while increasing local property taxes. The result has been reduced services, higher crime and higher tax bills for families.”

“Plenty of data and studies suggest that crime increases during economic downturns,” said Lampitt. “So it’s curious why the Governor would choose to slash municipal aid over the course of his term — in the middle of the most serious recession in decades. The Governor’s municipal aid cuts have had troubling impacts on public safety and have only resulted in even higher property taxes for 6th District residents.”

Christie’s Cuts to Municipal Aid (FY’13 Proposal compared to FY’10 Budget)
Maple Shade: $439,502
Berlin Township: $227,741
Cherry Hill: $2,300,000
Collingswood: $307,308
Gibbsboro: $72,693
Haddon Township: $324,478
Haddonfield: $275,894
Hi Nella: $15,702
Merchantville: $143,431
Oaklyn: $72,280
Pennsauken: $1,400,000
Somerdale: $98,959
Stratford: $168,488
Voorhees: $577,420