Updated February 18, 2017
Posted February 18, 2017
By Susan K. Livio | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
With the Governor and the entire Legislature on the ballot this election year, New Jerseyans will likely hear numerous politicians promise to reduce their especially high property tax bills.
We pay among the highest property taxes in the nation. Last year, the average homeowner paid $8,500 per home, a 2.35 percent increase over 2015, according to the most recent state calculations.
Both the Christie administration and the Legislature agree the annual increases would have been worse had they not passed a 2 percent spending cap on most local expenses.
As unpleasant as it is to admit, there are several facts about the Garden State that make bringing down property taxes very difficult, according to Marc Pfeiffer, assistant director for the Bloustein Local Government Research Center at Rutgers Center. (He previously helped manage six municipalities in central and north Jersey, then more than a quarter-century at the state office overseeing local government spending.)
“New Jersey has had property tax problem for roughly 140 years. We have been talking about this forever,” Pfeiffer said. “If we could have solved it easily, it would have been done.”
In no particular order, here are 7 reasons why they’re so high.