New Jersey has made a bit of a muddle of things, as you may have heard. The state is just this side of completely belly-up, and they have had to make a whole hell of a lot of cuts. In fact, only those of us who moved here from California aren’t complaining about the state of things.
The cuts that most directly impact us are the ones to the local schools. Our district has lost 100% of state funding. That means that it’s all on the residents of Rockwelland to fund our first-class schools. The superintendent and school board has held a series of meetings to show the town where and how they are making cuts in response to the crisis. They are being remarkable fiscally responsible.
But they are also asking for tax increases in a town with very, very high taxes.
Today, we go to the polls to vote on the budget. If it is defeated, they will need to make deeper cuts in the school budget. If it passes, our taxes will go up. It’s a secret ballot, of course, but I don’t mind telling you that I am voting for tax increases. There just ain’t nuthin’ more worth spending money on than education.
There are those who are opposed, and I get it. Their taxes are pretty damned high. But I think if you can afford a house that is appraised at a gazillion dollars and you are sending four children to the school district, you should probably at least consider the merits of a 2% tax increase. I’m just saying.
Plus, maybe if we do a better job of edumacating these kids than the last couple of generations, they’ll grow up knowing how to balance the state budget.