New Jersey to Begin Taxing Residents for… *Checks Notes*… Rain?
Proving that liberals will tax anything that’s not nailed down, property owners in New Jersey will soon be paying new taxes every single time that it rains. And like all modern liberal taxes, it will be a progressive tax – straight out of chapter 2 of The Communist Manifesto.
How much you are taxed for the rain will depend on how much property you own. If you think back to those math lessons in school that involved surface area and water volume, you’ll quickly realize that this tax model has the potential to cripple any business with a parking lot.
What prompted the New Jersey legislature to decide to start taxing rain?
The same thing that is forcing many “blue” states into bankruptcy right now: Their rotten public-sector labor union pension plans.
Decades of mismanagement and pie-in-the-sky retirement plans have left the state clawing under every couch cushion to find something left to tax. The short-sighted politicians never seem to realize that allowing every state employee to retire in the lap of luxury will eventually make your state go broke.
New Jersey’s high taxes have more residents fleeing the state than New York or California. The rain tax will probably make that phenomenon even worse.
New Jersey’s water is in terrible shape. Its rivers and bays are horribly polluted because the political class has spent all the money paying off the unions for so many years instead of modernizing its water systems like other states.
To upgrade the state’s systems now, after so many years of neglect, would require more than $16 billion. There’s nothing left to tax, so now they’re taxing the rain to pay for a problem their own neglect created.
How exactly does a “rain tax” work?
The new tax law, which is about to be signed into law by Democrat Governor Phil Murphy, allows counties, towns and local authorities to set up “storm water utilities.” These newly-created local bureaucrats will be vested with the authority to assess fees on property owners based on how much “non-permeable surface” they own.
If you have a smaller non-permeable surface like a driveway, you’ll pay less in tax. If you run a business that has a parking lot, you’ll get hammered. Poor people who don’t own property are in the clear, as usual.
The idea behind this is that when it rains, and water runs off from your driveway, it puts pollutants into the water system. And because New Jersey never upgraded its water systems to handle pollutants, that dirty water ends up in nearby lakes and streams.
If you’re a property owner in New Jersey, you are the one who has to pay for this problem. It’s all your fault.
Meanwhile, professors from Rutgers University in New Jersey are retiring with state pension plans around $157,000 per year, for the rest of their lives.
There are retired teachers in Newark – presidential candidate Cory Booker’s old stomping ground – who make $159,000 per year in retirement. The president of the Essex Regional Educational Services Commission (whatever that is) retired in 2016 and she’s enjoying a state pension of $192,000 per year.
But the villains who are behind New Jersey’s water problems? They’re the property and business owners with non-permeable surfaces.
They’re the ones being forced to pay for New Jersey’s mismanagement.
If New Jersey voters are frustrated that their Democrat Governor is about to tax them every time it rains, there is a possible of ray of hope in all this. Just look to the 2014 gubernatorial race in Maryland.
Maryland is a deep blue state and the Democrat candidate that year, Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, was expected to be a shoe-in.
Republican Larry Hogan was so far behind Brown in the polling right up until election day that no one expected him to win. News outlets in Maryland didn’t even do exit polling in 2014, because it was a foregone conclusion that the Democrat would carry the Governor’s race.
When Hogan won the race, it took months for the media to figure out how he pulled off that upset victory. Without exit polling, they were clueless as to why Maryland voters in a deep blue state suddenly supported the Republican candidate.
The main issue that Larry Hogan campaigned on, as it turns out, was Maryland’s new “rain tax” – the one that New Jersey based its new tax on.
So, hang in there, New Jersey. Phil Murphy will have to run for reelection in a few years.