TRENTON – Senator Shirley K. Turner (D-Mercer/Hunterdon) issued this statement today in response to Governor Christie’s State of the State address delivered at the state capitol:
“For all New Jerseyans to begin to see and feel the effects of an improved economy, our state’s working poor families must be a part of the recovery equation. Year after year, the needs of New Jersey’s working poor are ignored while our fiscal health fails to improve. The fact is that working poor spending is the economic engine that will help pump money back into the economy and create new jobs. If we continue to pretend that working poor families are inconsequential to the health of our economy, our state’s economy will grow at a snail’s pace.
“The two percent payroll tax increase that workers will pay as part of the federal ‘fiscal cliff’ deal will hurt working poor families and stifle New Jersey’s economic recovery. Our state’s workers cannot afford to lose two percent from their paychecks, and our state’s economy cannot afford to lose the spending that the two percent would generate.
“Governor Christie must sign the minimum wage to help bridge the gap in the budgets of workers who earn too little to afford the cost of living. He must also commit to fully funding the Earned Income Tax Credit to allow individuals and families earning poverty level wages to reduce their tax liability and provide them with the discretionary income that will help to stimulate the economy. We cannot leave any of New Jersey’s workers behind.”