Cryan: NJ Seniors Will Suffer Due to Christie’s Cuts

Assembly Democrat Joseph Cryan (D-Union) issued the following statement on Monday in response to Gov. Chris Christie’s decision to delay issuing $395 million in 2014 Homestead Benefit Program credits until May 2015. The Democratic budget required payments to be made this summer, but the governor eliminated the requirement today with a line-item veto:

“Once again, Gov. Christie has made a choice to break the promise of property tax relief he made to New Jersey’s seniors. Rather than receiving their much-needed property tax relief this August, they’ll have to wait until next May. That means that instead of getting the reduction on their bills they expected, some of our state’s most vulnerable residents will see their taxes go up by a few hundred dollars.

“Because those who benefit from the program are often on a fixed income, not having this credit available means that keeping a roof over their heads in a state with some of the highest property taxes in the nation will involve pinching pennies and making tough choices day in and day out. These folks are holding on to the hope of a little help just to have somewhere to live, but at this point, it seems like they may never see the relief they need.

“As usual, because of the Christie administration’s misplaced priorities, middle-class and low-income New Jerseyans are left to struggle while millionaires get away with paying less than their fair share. When will we get back to our core value of putting everyday people first in New Jersey?”

The Homestead Benefit Program, a property tax relief program available to senior citizens and disabled New Jersey residents, is considered a lifeline among recipients of program aid, Cryan said.