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Gusciora on Christie’s School Funding Plan: “Does this mean you will be paying property taxes in Trenton?”

Assemblyman Says Governor’s Plan Does Not Taken into Account All the Tax-Exempt Properties that Abound in Urban Cities

Assemblyman Reed Gusciora (D-Mercer/Hunterdon) on Thursday criticized Gov. Christie’s proposed education funding plan as disingenuous, saying it flies in the face of the state’s constitutional requirement to provide a “thorough and efficient” education for New Jersey school children, “particularly those in urban centers.”

Gusciora pointed out that the State Supreme Court’s decisions in Robinson v. Cahill (1970) and Abbott v. Burke (1981-2008; 19+ decisions) have reaffirmed the fundamental principle that each and every child in the state have access to a quality education.

“The Governor should be working to close the achievement gap among urban and suburban students,” said Gusciora. “Instead, he would like to give more money to suburban students and lessen the quality of education for urban students. Does the Governor intend to pay property taxes for tax exempt state buildings in the City of Trenton?

“The Governor needs to recognize that urban centers are the host of most hospitals, most places of worship, most higher education learning centers, government buildings and non-profit institutions – none of which pay property taxes. That is why the Supreme Court recognized a compelling need for the state to make up the difference.”

Gusciora also questioned the Governor’s need to disparage Trenton during his education speech Tuesday, when not too long ago he made positive overtures about working to revitalize the capital city.

“It’s disappointing that he chose division rather than working to bring people together,” concluded Gusciora. “He must be hanging out with Donald Trump too much.”