Often times when new legislation is passed, the effects are either nominal or not what was originally intended.  That is not the case with Governor Christie’s 2% cap on interest arbitration awards.  This vital piece of legislation continues to pay enormous dividends for New Jersey taxpayers, as arbitrators now have firm guidelines and limits on what they can award if contract negotiations stall and end up in arbitration.

Middletown’s most recent contract negotiations resulted in a contract that was fair to both the union and the township, with sensible terms that will benefit every taxpayer for years to come. The 2% cap was arguably the most important factor in keeping the settlement reasonable and affordable for Middletown taxpayers. 

The importance of this initiative toward reining in New Jersey’s property taxes cannot be overstated.  Unfortunately, the 2% cap is only temporary and set to expire in 2017. 

Therefore, it is imperative that this initiative be made permanent by the legislature as soon as possible.  Middletown Township is living proof that the 2% cap works and gives elected officials an effective tool in keeping costs down and local property taxes in check.

 

Gerry Scharfenberger
Middletown Township Committee