Schaer Joins with Advocates in Calling on Christie to Restore Tax Credit for NJ’s Working Poor

(TRENTON) — After a public hearing of the Assembly Budget Committee on Tuesday, Vice Chair Gary Schaer joined with those calling for Gov. Christie to restore the cuts he made to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for New Jersey’s working poor.

Christie slashed the credit from 25 percent of the federal tax credit to 20 percent in 2010, effectively raising the income tax liability for New Jersey families by $45 million. Schaer is one of the prime sponsors of legislation (A-3793) currently sitting on the Governor’s desk that would reverse the cut and restore the program to its previous level of 25 percent beginning in tax year 2013.

“This program has been credited with reducing child poverty and increasing work incentives. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have praised this program going back to Ronald Reagan who once hailed it as one of the most significant tools to fight poverty.

“Given the positive results this program has bared, we can ill afford to continue denying poor working families this benefit. More importantly, they cannot afford to raise their families in a state as costly as New Jersey while the Governor continues to slash this assistance.

“Denying poor working families financial relief is no way to govern. These families need financial relief and the bill sitting on the Governor’s desk delivers that.

“It’s time that the Governor stop using this issue as a political football and do right by those who have been hurt the most during this economy,” said Schaer (D-Bergen/Passaic).