43. New Jersey
Debt per capita: $7,378 (5th highest)
> 2015 Unemployment rate: 5.6% (tied-19th highest)
> Credit rating: A2/A-
> Poverty: 10.8% (8th lowest)
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, New Jersey has among the smallest reserve funds of any state. According to analysis by the Pew Charitable Trusts, New Jersey would be able to operate just eight full days with its budget reserves alone, less than a third of the average across all states. New Jersey also has just 42.5% of the assets it needs to meet its future pension obligations, nearly the smallest share of any state. Credit ratings agency S&P recently downgraded New Jersey’s bonds from A to A-, nearly the worst rating in the country. The agency cited the underfunded pension as one of the main reasons for the downgrade as well as the recently announced tax cut.
The “tax cuts”, which will amount to an estimated $1.4 billion in lost revenue a year by 2021, have been criticized as politically expedient and financially irresponsible as New Jersey struggles to balance its budget. New Jersey’s credit rating has been downgraded 10 times under Gov. Chris Christie, more than any other governor in U.S. history.
While most residents will not see a deal to raise New Jersey’s gas tax by 23 cents a gallon, to 37.5 cents as a “tax cut” or in reality , despite Governor Christies war with the media most people realize that the nails have long been driven into New Jersey’s economic coffin. The Massive flight of personal assets as well as businesses, running from the state’s high tax anti-business climate has significantly eroded the tax base over years making a major financial shake-up in the state a foregone conclusion.