Energy Tax Talking Points
Talking Points on S-330 Requiring Direct Payment of Energy Taxes to Municipal Government
- Taxes on gas and electric utilities were originally collected by the host municipalities, and when the StaDone Editingte made itself the collection agent for these taxes, it promised to return the proceeds to municipalities for property tax relief.
- Just as municipalities collect property taxes for the benefit of school districts, counties, and other entities, the State is supposed to collect Energy Taxes for the benefit of municipal governments.
- For years though, State officials have diverted funding from Energy Taxes to plug holes in the State budget and to fund State programs. Instead of being spent on local programs and services or used to offset property taxes, the money has been spent as successive legislatures and administrations have seen fit.
- The diversion of dedicated energy tax receipts to the State’s General Fund has left many municipalities with serious needs, burdensome property taxes, and further jeopardizes this critical property tax relief funding for future years.
- Since 2001, municipalities have lost $14 billion in Energy Tax Receipts Funding.
- Over the years, the State has reduced the Consolidated Municipal Property Tax Relief Aid (CMPTRA), which is also comprised of revenues that should be returned to municipalities, to continue to collect Energy Taxes, while keeping additional revenue that should have been returned to provide property tax relief.
- Local elected officials are in the best position to decide the best use of these resources, which were always intended to fund local programs and services.
- S-330, sponsored by Senator Singleton and Senate President Scutari would restore energy tax relief funding over a five-year period, ensuring that each municipality will be restored to the 2007 (SFY 2008) Energy Tax Receipts/CMPTRA level and adjust that amount to account for inflation.
- The bills would require certain energy tax receipts to be paid directly to municipalities and, thereby, would assure local property taxpayers compensation for hosting transmission facilities and lines that allow gas and electric energy corporations to serve customers and conduct business in our Garden State.
- The time has come to restore to local budgets the millions in property tax relief that have been annually diverted to meet State needs.
The League of Municipalities salutes the sponsors for listening to the mayors in their districts and all around New Jersey and for advancing this legislation.
For additional information, visit the League of Municipalities' Energy Tax Restoration Resource Center. You can also contact Lori Buckelew or Andrew La at 609-695-3481, ext. 112 or ext. 116, or email Lori Buckelew or Andrew LaFevre.