Posts Tagged ‘NJ’

Is Dan serious about being Mayor?

Here’s the thing.  I don’t want to have to be involved in local politics at all.

However, I live in Trenton and own enough property so that high taxes and declining value could be a substantial economic blow.  I am not alone in this precarious situation.  Every home and building owner in Trenton is at risk as our city’s budget comes closer to falling into the financial abyss. Read the rest of this entry »

Valuation tips for voters on the Water Works deal

Now that the Petitioners have won their court case, the voters may need to decide on whether to do the Water Deal.  This is a complicated decision and presumably will be on the ballot this December.  In the meantime, the city will have to pass along at least an $.80 / $100 tax hike.  That’s assuming there’s not another tax hike on top of that to make up for money the State is taking away. Read the rest of this entry »

The State created this mess and needs to fix it

The elephant in the room when it comes to revitalization is schools.  Everyone knows it but most are hesitant to talk about the real underlying problem. Read the rest of this entry »

Possible Problems with City’s Budget Data

I should point out the central fact that is in dispute in the Mayor’s speech on March 30th.

Mayor Palmer claims that the State should be paying us $155M if they were taxed at our rate (~let’s say 3% effective). That would equate to a valuation of state property of roughly $4.5B. Read the rest of this entry »

Citizens Band Together to Fix Trenton’s Budget

One member owns a new restaurant downtown.  Another develops real estate, converting old buildings to new residences.  A third works on Wall Street.  Other members by profession include a college professor, a retired state worker, and the director of a non-profit arts organization. Read the rest of this entry »

Trenton’s “off the grid” candidates

We’ve come a long way since 2006 when very few of our candidates had web sites.  In this election cycle most of the 42 candidates for Mayor and City Council have web sites, email addresses and even FaceBook pages.  However there are some stragglers. Read the rest of this entry »

Gov. Christie: Drug Counselor

Our neighbors in NJ have had it with feeding our addiction for state aid so they’re proposing to cut us off cold turkey.  Like any addict, going cold turkey is the painful way to get clean.  Whether or not all aid is cut is a debate, but it seems sure that a painful amount is in jeopardy.

To avoid this we as Trentonians (and forget the current administration for a minute) need to recommend a treatment plan that the state can live with.   Citizens can form this plan and with the backing of enough of the serious candidates for Mayor and Council, Gov. Christie will take our commitment to “budget recovery” seriously.  But first the patient has to want to be healed. Read the rest of this entry »

The “Up” side for Trenton

As the new Citizen’s Budget Committee prepares to form its recommendations to the public and our elected officials, I pondered aloud to my committee, “what limits our pace of revitalization?”

I’ll get to the answer but first I’ll recap the problem and the solution.

Our economic problems are dangerous

Read the rest of this entry »

It’s Not My Fault – Leadership in Trenton

The theme for last night’s City Council Special Session on the budget was, “The mess we’re in isn’t my fault”.

The administration officially proposed a budget that raises property taxes by almost 20% which would make Trenton’s rate by far the highest in NJ.

The Mayor spoke first.  Let me summarize. Read the rest of this entry »

The Backlash against “Born and Bred”

Trenton is a boosterish town.  It’s the kind of place where if a visitor said, “My, those buildings look grungy”, his host would say, “Oh no, that’s its patina”.

Ask any Trenton native and they’ll tell you how proud they are of the city, “I’m Trenton Proud”.

What?

We’ve done such a great job running the place that our industry has left town, our education level is among the lowest in the state and we’re on the verge of bankruptcy.  Yea for us! Read the rest of this entry »