The New Jersey Legislature Thursday is set to vote on a bill that would increase the income tax on residents earning $1 million or more in 2010.
Democrats, which control both the General Assembly and the Senate, are pushing for the tax hike on the state’s wealthiest citizens to offset proposed cuts to senior programs in Gov. Chris Christie’s fiscal 2011 budget plan. That $29.3 billion spending proposal is $2.9 billion smaller than the current budget and includes a nearly $11 billion deficit.
If the bill is approved, the estimated $637 million of additional revenue must go toward restoring proposed reductions in senior drug programs and property-tax rebates for the elderly.
The governor, a Republican, has said that he would veto any tax hikes.
“I was not sent here to approve tax increases,” Christie said during his budget address in mid-March before a joint session of the Legislature. “I was sent here to veto them. And mark my words today, if a tax increase is sent to my desk, I will veto it.”
To overturn a potential veto, Democrats would need to pick up four GOP votes in the Senate and seven Republicans in the lower chamber to reach a two-thirds majority.