Ridgewood NJ, Abraham Lincoln is widely regarded as one of the greatest presidents in American history. His leadership during one of the nation’s most tumultuous periods, the Civil War, and his efforts to preserve the Union, abolish slavery, and promote equality have left an indelible mark on the United States.
Ridgewood NJ, Abraham Lincoln was born in Hardin County, Kentucky, on February 12 in 1809. He lived for a time in Indiana before moving to Illinois. He worked on a farm, split rails for fences, worked in a store, was a captain in the Black Hawk War, and worked as a lawyer. He married Mary Todd and together they had four boys, only one of whom lived to maturity.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’
Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Monday, January 20, 2020, marks America’s 35th celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr., Day. Honoring King with the sacred status of a federal holiday—of which there are only 10, none other named for a 20th-century figure—is a testament to the unifying power of his legacy.
Baseball Americana is celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
Atlanta GA, Martin Luther King Jr. teaches his son, Marty, how to hold a baseball bat in the backyard of their Atlanta home (that’s daughter Yolanda on the right), November 1964.
A longtime admirer of Jackie Robinson, Dr. King had many connections to the baseball world. In fact, it was King who helped convince Jackie to ignore detractors and take a more vocal role in the civil rights movement (they often appeared together at public events). King once said of Robinson: “[B]ack in the days when integration wasn’t fashionable, he underwent the trauma and the humiliation and the loneliness which comes with being a pilgrim walking the lonesome byways toward the high road of Freedom. He was a sit-inner before the sit-ins, a freedom rider before the Freedom Rides.” (Jackie disagreed with King on some issues, especially the Vietnam War; however, Robinson—who called King “one of the most magnificent leaders the world has today”—devoted an entire chapter of his 1972 autobiography to MLK’s influence.)
President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, as the nation approached its third year of bloody civil war. The proclamation declared “that all persons held as slaves” within the rebellious states “are, and henceforward shall be free.”
Washington DC, the American Blockchain Political Action Committee is pleased to announce that Michael Onghai has joined our Board of Advisors. As one of the earliest pioneers of the Internet revolution as former CEO of Looksmart, Michael Onghai is also a seed investor in Coinbase, FundersClub, and Upflex. He currently is principal and seed investor in Alpha Sigma Funds, and a director of MGT Capital, a publicly traded company engaged in mining of Bitcoin. He also was one of the pioneer software developers of the Human Genome Project.
Wyckoff NJ, A measure permitting public-private partnerships for energy-related projects cleared a legislative committee today creating an opportunity for more savings say Assemblyman Christopher DePhillips and Assemblywoman BettyLou DeCroce.
“Everyone will see savings as a result of this legislation,” said DePhillips (R-Bergen). “We won’t burden our taxpayers for energy upgrades in our public schools and municipal buildings. Public entities can get a more energy efficient infrastructure and the private companies can use the utility savings.”
Trenton NJ, Assembly sponsors of Right to Work legislation praised the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision today that government workers cannot be required to pay union fees as a condition of working in public service.
“This decision restores free speech and freedom of association to every public school teacher and government worker across New Jersey,” said Assemblywoman Amy Handlin (R-Monmouth). “For far too long, unions have propped themselves up with money skimmed out of paychecks despite the workers’ objections.”
Handlin’s legislation (A183) would make New Jersey the twenty-ninth Right to Work state by allowing workers to decide whether to join a union. Assemblyman Robert Auth also sponsors the legislation.
After the top court’s decision, New Jersey’s 475,000 state and local public workers could opt out of their unions – taking money and political clout with them.
“This is a victory for rank-and-file teachers,” said Auth (R-Bergen). “Big unions have concentrated on procuring power and excessively paying its leadership while neglecting teachers in the classrooms. The NJEA’s executive director was paid $1.2 million thanks to dues as high as eleven-hundred dollars imposed on full-time teachers.”
Auth pointed to a Star-Ledger investigation that found the NJEA gave its top leadership a 42 percent pay raise in 2016. On average, the fourteen officers identified as NJEA leaders earned more than $530,000 — up from $379,000 the year before.
New Jersey is one of just 22 states where public employees can be forced to join and pay dues to a public union.
Trenton NJ, Assembly Republicans on the budget committee unanimously rejected a competing legislative tax plan today that raises taxes by $1.2 billion dollars. Legislative Democrats swapped Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposed millionaires tax and sales tax increase for a corporate tax hike and other tax increases.
“Legislative Democrats keep warning about how Murphy’s millionaires tax will drive high-earners and their businesses out but their plan taxes businesses at a much higher rate,” said Assemblyman John DiMaio (R-Warren), the Republican budget officer.
Under their plan, the top rate on corporations would jump from 9 percent to 13 percent. Murphy proposed raising the top income tax rate from 8.97 percent to 10.75 percent on income over $1 million.
“That is much more likely to make businesses move out, not the other way around,” concluded DiMaio. “Their own argument refutes their plan.”
The new rate would apply on corporations earning more than $25 million and would become the highest business tax in the nation. Businesses earning between $1 million and $25 million would also pay a slightly lower rate of 11.5 percent. That would only be exceeded by Iowa at 12 percent, which is in the process of lowering its top rate to 9.8 percent.
New Jersey currently has the sixth-highest corporate tax rate in the country, and has been rated the worst business tax climate for the past four years according to the Tax Foundation.
“Increasing corporate business taxes for even two years to what is already one of the highest rates in the nation will slow already lagging job growth,” added Nancy Munoz (R-Union), a member of the budget committee.
New Jersey has lost nearly 15,000 jobs since January, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, while the labor force has decreased by 30,000 people.
“Democrats claim they want to help those who are struggling but they make it harder by increasing the cost of doing business,” continued Munoz. “When jobs are being lost, the poor get poorer and the middle-class shrinks.”
“Senator Bob Menendez has never seen a tax he didn’t want to hike.”
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
UNION COUNTY NJ, Tax day is yet another reminder of the immense tax burden placed on hard-working New Jerseyans. For years, tax-and-spend politicians like Senator Bob Menendez have voted to increase taxes—including taxes on Social Security and Medicaid—with little regard for the already overtaxed citizens of New Jersey.
“In his 25 ineffective years in Washington, Senator Bob Menendez has never seen a tax he didn’t want to hike—voting over 90 times to increase taxes. New Jersey is 50 out 50—dead last—in money we get back from Washington as a percentage of tax dollars we send there, and tax day is just another unfortunate reminder to millions of hard-working New Jerseyans that Bob Menendez has failed to stand up for them,” said Hugin Communications Director Megan Piwowar.
“For too long, New Jerseyans have been underrepresented in Washington and overtaxed here at home, and we’re confident that on November 6th New Jersey voters will say enough is enough to Bob Menendez’s tax hikes by supporting former Marine and business leader Bob Hugin, a senator they can be proud of.”
Bob Hugin, a Marine Corps Veteran and business leader who has created thousands of New Jersey jobs, is seeking the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate to challenge incumbent Democrat Senator Bob Menendez.
SENATOR MENENDEZ HAS VOTED TO INCREASE TAXES OVER 90 TIMES SINCE BEING ELECTED TO CONGRESS.
SENATOR MENENDEZ HAS VOTED TO INCREASE TAXES ON THE MIDDLE CLASS, ON WORKING FAMILIES, AND ON SOCIAL SECURITY RECIPIENTS.
SENATOR MENENDEZ HAS VOTED TO INCREASE TAXES ON SMALL BUSINESSES AND ON SELF-EMPLOYED INDIVIDUALS.
UNDER SENATOR MENENDEZ’S WATCH, NEW JERSEY RANKS 50 OUT OF 50—DEAD LAST—IN MONEY SENT TO WASHINGTON THAT COMES BACK TO THE STATE.
MENENDEZ VOTED TO RAISE TAXES OVER 90 TIMES WHILE REPRESENTING NEW JERSEY IN CONGRESS.
Voted to raise taxes on Medicare and Social Security recipients – 05/27/1993
Voted to raise the gas tax and delay cost of living adjustments for the military – 08/05/1993
Voted against Social Security tax relief and a child tax credit for working families – 04/05/1995
Voted against a child tax credit and against $31 billion in tax relief for college students – 06/26/1997
Voted against gas tax decreases and giving New Jersey more control over infrastructure funds – 04/01/1998
Voted against tax relief for self-employed individuals, for farmers, and for married couples – 09/26/1998
Voted against $778.5 billion in tax relief and protecting Social Security revenues from other uses – 03/25/1999
Voted against $792 billion in tax relief, against increasing Education Savings Account limits, and allowing self-employed individuals to deduct health insurance premiums – 07/22/1999
Voted against $792 billion in tax relief for individuals and families – 08/05/1999
Voted against $182 billion in tax relief for married couples – 02/10/2000
Voted against $46 billion in tax relief and allowing self-employed individuals to deduct the cost of their health insurance – 03/09/2000
Voted to increase Social Security taxes – 07/27/2000
Voted against middle class tax relief – 03/08/2001
Voted against tax relief for married families with children – 03/29/2001
Voted against $958 billion in tax relief – 05/16/2001
Voted against $1.35 trillion in tax relief – 05/26/2001
Voted against $159 billion in tax relief for individuals and small businesses – 10/24/2001
Voted against tax relief for individuals and small business, extending unemployment benefits for workers, and providing a refundable tax credit to purchase health insurance – 12/20/2001
Voted against tax relief and extending unemployment benefits for workers – 02/14/2002
Voted against making individual tax relief permanent – 04/18/2002
Voted against $350 billion in tax relief, an increase in the child tax credit, and $20 billion in new Medicaid funding – 05/23/2003
Voted against extending middle class tax relief for individuals and working families – 5/11/2006
Voted to raise taxes on small businesses – 12/24/09
Voted against payroll tax cuts for hard-working New Jerseyans – 12/01/2011
Governor Murphy Wants to Slash Homestead Benefit Program After Campaigning to Increase Rebates
March 31, 2018
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ,Senator Michael Doherty said that Governor Phil Murphy’s budget proposal for 2019 is looking even worse as more details are revealed, including his plan to cut property tax rebates by more than 50 percent next year.
Sen. Mike Doherty slammed Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposal to cut property tax rebates by more than 50 percent next year. (SenateNJ.com)
“It’s sickening that Governor Murphy wants to reduce property tax rebates further despite promising during his campaign to restore cuts imposed by Democrats in the current budget,” said Doherty (R-23). “With the highest property tax bills in the nation, New Jerseyans need more property tax relief, not less as Governor Murphy has proposed.”
According to the Fiscal Year 2019 Budget in Brief provided by the Murphy Administration (see page 18), the governor has chosen to perpetuate a 50 percent cut to the Homestead Benefit Program in the current year’s budget that was to be fully restored in 2019.
This proposal directly contradicts his campaign pledge of “restoring rebates to low-income, seniors and disabled residents.”
“Not only has Governor Murphy chosen to prevent the restoration of funding to rebates, which would have doubled this important form of property tax relief in 2019, he has proposed cutting another $12.5 million from the Homestead Benefit Program,” Doherty said. “It’s a gut punch to property taxpayers.”
Doherty said the Governor has a constitutional obligation to increase property tax relief, given a projected budget surplus of $800 million to $1.5 billion that’s tied to larger than expected income tax collections.
“The New Jersey Constitution requires income tax revenues collected by the State to be dedicated to property tax relief,” added Doherty. “The Governor is trying to cut Homestead rebates when he should be increasing them. It looks like Governor Murphy has some explaining to do to property taxpayers.”
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