Taxes, Spending and Government Efficiencies
Corrupt politics leads to irrational economic policy.† To restore the economy, government needs to help create well paying jobs in the private sector.† There is no way to lower taxes with more laws and more government.† Cutting taxes means eliminating laws, not adding them.† Henry Ford revolutionized industrial America with the idea that workers should be able to purchase the products they produce.† Similarly, government employees should be using the services they provide.† When public workers drive in private vehicles instead of using public transit, when teachers send their children to private school instead of using the public schools, then that is a clear sign that something is wrong with the way government operates and it needs to change.
New Revenue Sources
††††††††††† Legalize and tax Marijuana. This will raise more revenue for the government.† It will also thwart organized crime while reducing expenses for police, courts and jails.
††††††††††† Tax Trusts on the Basis of Wealth, not Income. †The United States is a capitalist country that hasnít had any venture capital for the past three decades.† Instead of funding start ups and new ideas to create the economy of the future that would have been ready to take up the slack as the current economy reached the end of its shelf life, Wall Street bankers, lawyers and financiers created new instruments that created a river of money into which they dipped their buckets to enrich themselves.
††††††††††† The money raised from the wealth tax on trusts should be made available to entrepreneurs on a competitive basis.
††††††††††† Collect Sales Tax on Internet Sales.† Why would anyone want to open a store and pay rent, insurance and hire people when customers can order products on-line and dodge the sales tax?† The failure to collect sales tax on internet sales has severely damaged the commercial real estate market.† Either there is sales tax or there is not.† If there is going to be sales tax, everyone must pay it regardless of the mechanism by which they make their purchases.
††††††††††† Abolish County Government. County government is the primary source of corruption in politics.† A level of government most people know nothing about or what it does, it is an unnecessary anomaly. Consuming about 25% of real estate taxes, this third level of government should be abolished, local governments consolidated, and a Compact and Contiguous clause added to the State Constitution to get rid of gerrymandering.† The county lines are historical anomalies that amount to gerrymanders.† For example, Allentown, New Jersey, in Monmouth County, is closer to Trenton, Mercer Countyís county seat, than it is to Freehold, Monmouth Countyís county seat.† It is a more integral part of the Hamilton, Hightstown economy of Mercer County than it is of Monmouth County.† Regional government is the only one that makes sense in a modern economy.
††††††††††† Abolish the Council on Affordable Housing. The laudable attempt to create affordable housing has backfired.† The rules for affordable housing raise the cost of building new houses and punish communities that create jobs.† There is plenty of affordable housing in New Jersey, it is just in places people do not want to live, which is why it is affordable.† The answer is to make it safe and fix the schools in the places where the housing is already affordable.† The police need to go where the crime is.
††††††††††† Abolish the New Jersey School Boards Association.† This is a publicly funded tax lobby masquerading as an education lobby.†
††††††††††† Eliminate all categorical aid to schools not affecting education. New Jersey could save about $500 million a year if middle and high school students took public buses like New Jersey Transit instead of yellow school buses to school.† Most students already do not ride the school buses, but the legislature has written rules that require school districts to supply a seat even if no one sits in it.† In Princeton, where I was on the Finance Committee of the School Board for nine years, two as Chairman, the district spent $1.25 per passenger mile on school busing.† Coach Suburban Transit, a private bus company, charges $.25 per passenger mile on big intercity buses and makes a profit.
††††††††††† So, no more transportation aid to school districts.† No more security aid either.† Security is a police function, not an education function.† Also, the idea that the schools can be safe while the neighborhoods in which the children live can be dangerous is an absurdity.† To have kids go to a secure school and then go home to be murdered in their beds, as happened to Janaya Glover, age 6 and Jayasia Watson, age 7 when I was teaching at the Jefferson School in Trenton is a misuse of public funds.
††††††††††† New Jersey needs a usable public transit system.† NJ Transit has shown itself to be in the car business, not the public transport business.† It also loses money.† So, New Jersey Transit needs to be sold to private bus and rail providers.
††††††††††† We live in a 24/7 economy, except for the taxpayer funded government portion, which is open only from 8:30 to 4:30 from Monday through Friday except for public holidays.† Public employees have so many personal day and sick leave days off, that it is rare if ever that a full compliment of public employees is available for that one day that a taxpayer needs to do business at a government office.
††††††††††† Government needs to be open from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 or 7:00 p.m. five days a week, with limited hours on Saturdays and even Sundays.
Link to Op-Ed Piece on Education in Trenton Times http://www.nj.com/opinion/times/oped/index.ssf?/base/news-0/1242965106188220.xml&coll=5
Link to Another Op-Ed Piece on Education in Trenton Timeshttp://www.nj.com/timesoftrenton/stories/index.ssf?/base/news-0/1234933529136580.xml&coll=5
Return to Leinsdorf for Governor Introduction http://www.leinsdorf.com/Governor/Public%20Financing.htm