Yesterday, we joined academics and experts on economic development to sound the alarm on Governor Christie’s runaway corporate subsidy program. New Jersey has promised $5.1 billion to businesses since 2010, over four times more than were awarded in the previous decade. In 2014 alone the Christie Administration pledged $2 billion to businesses, with an average of $79,000 per job.
The problem is that every public dollar lost to Citibank or Prudential is a dollar that can’t be used for higher education, clean energy programs and other public investments that will actually deliver the jobs New Jersey needs. Over the same period of time he’s doled out these subsidies he has underfunded public schools by $6 billion, cut property tax relief in half and raised taxes on the working poor.
It would be one thing if these subsidies were actually creating jobs. But despite the surge in subsidies, New Jersey’s economy has continued to lag behind its neighbors in the region. New Jersey has only recovered half of the jobs lost during the Recession, while New York has recovered over 200 percent and Pennsylvania 100 percent of jobs lost.
From 2009 to 2012, all income growth has gone to the top 1 percent of New Jerseyans, while middle-class families have seen their incomes drop by 9 percent. Poverty is rising in New Jersey while it is on the decline nationwide.
The fact is that we aren’t broke. We’ve been robbed. The Christie Administration is giving away the store to the corporate 1% while we pay more and get less.
If you want to tell Gov. Christie enough is enough, click here. And if you want to see some of the press from yesterday’s event, check out the links below: