NJ Voters Furious As Governor Murphy Prepares To Sign 'Rain Tax' Into Law

Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy had already brought New Jersey, one of the most heavily taxed states in the US, into the ninth circle of taxation hell with new taxes (to save the state's ailing pension system). But now, frustrated residents including middle class voters in one of the least affordable states in the country, have been given one more thing to complain about: A tax on the rain.

After a bill authorizing the new local taxes was passed by the state late last month, Murphy is preparing to sign it into law, over the objections of the state's Republicans, according to the New York Post.

Murphy

Gov. Phil Murphy

As one state lawmaker told the post, just when NJ residents thought the state had already laid claim to every revenue stream imaginable, Democrats have found one more thing to tax.

"Every time you think there’s nothing left to tax, we come up with something else," Assemblyman Hal Wirths (R-Morris-Sussex) exploded during a debate on the measure.

“It’s just never-ending down here.”

And voters are understandably furious.

The 'rain tax', which is largely supported by Democrats and largely opposed by Republicans, would allow towns, counties and local authorities to set up their own storm water utilities. These newly created arms of local bureaucracy would be empowered to charge property owners a fee based on the amount of non-permeable surface they own (think: parking lots and driveways). The logic behind this is that non-permeable surfaces create runoff when it rains, and that runoff gets polluted as it travels from these surfaces into local sewers, and then on to the state's water ways. The revenue generated by these taxes would be used to upgrade the state's storm water systems, and save the state's already polluted waters from further pollution (though the state would step in and scoop up 5% of all revenues).

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