(TRENTON) — Assembly Appropriations Chairwoman Nellie Pou (D-Passaic/Bergen) released the following statement Monday as the Assembly Budget Committee heard testimony on Gov. Chris Christie’s budget plan for the state Department of Health and Senior Services:
“Today’s testimony again calls into question Gov. Christie’s claim of shared sacrifice.
“Gov. Christie’s plan to require poor and middle-class senior citizens to pay significantly more for life-saving prescription drugs is wrong.
“Doing it while Gov. Christie also slashes property tax relief for senior citizens makes it even worse.
“Doing it while giving the wealthy a tax cut is unacceptable.
“We’re talking here about our parents, grandparents and the cornerstones of our communities who will be out $1,725 in lost property tax relief and increased prescription drug fees as people making $500,000 enjoy a $1,630 tax break.
“Senior citizens who are on a fixed income cannot afford extra taxes and fees without being forced to take drastic steps like skipping medication, and that will cost all taxpayers dearly when our seniors get sicker and require more expensive treatment.
“We can do better than targeting senior citizens who already can barely afford to make ends meet without being taxed more for their prescription drugs.”
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