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"The lines on the geopolitical map of New Jersey were drawn by men with political and/or economic agendas . . . today the costs of maintaining New Jersey’s multiple and redundant jurisdictions mounts into the billions of dollars."

Alan J. Karcher,
Multiple Municipal Madness

Municipal Consolidation: New Jersey And New York Governments Urged To Study Issue

As we move toward the end of 2012, municipalities across New York and New Jersey are dealing with the aftermath of a devastating hurricane and significant budgetary pressures. Many are struggling to determine how to deliver better services at the same or lower cost as tax revenues remain stagnant.
Couple this with a 2-percent budget cap and our municipal governments have their own localized version of the “fiscal cliff.” New York and New Jersey each have their own issues with municipal government inefficiency. New Jersey has 566 municipalities and more than 590 school districts. New York has more than 10,521 taxing districts resulting in a lasagna-like layer of multiple tax bills and resultant inefficiency.
What’s the solution to this morass of home rule? Both states have taken action in making it more feasible for residents and/or elected officials to consolidate towns and school districts. Before he became Governor, Andrew Cuomo passed the N.Y. Government Reorganization and Citizen Empowerment Act to allow citizens to effectively consolidate or dissolve local governments. In New Jersey, the state Legislature passed the “Local Option Municipal Consolidation Act” in 2007 making consolidation more feasible for many New Jersey municipalities.
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