Plumsted Dems make their case on local taxes

Staff Writer

Plumsted Dems make their case on local taxes BY KATHY BARATTA Staff Writer

Plumsted Dems make
their case on local taxes
Staff Writer

PLUMSTED — Mitch Geier and Don Knause, co-founders of Plumsted’s fledgling Democratic party, are running for Township Committee on the campaign slogan, "A Change for the Better."

Geier and Knause will square off against Republicans Bonnie Quesnel and Joseph Przywara in the Nov. 4 election for two three-year terms on the committee. Quesnel and Przywara are incumbents.

According to Geier and Knause, Plumsted property taxes have "skyrocketed."

Geier said homeowners received "sticker shock" with their property tax bill this year due to a 14 percent increase for 2003.

"Property taxes have been increasing substantially for some time, but this is the biggest increase in recent history," he said.

In a press release, Geier said he and Knause entered the race with their primary focus being a decrease in property taxes for Plumsted residents.

"Our primary focus in entering this election is to fight to decrease our skyrocketing property taxes. Our property taxes are already one of the highest in the nation and the rate of increase year-to-year is absurd. We have to stop this trend now.

"Families spend a lifetime working to own their home, but are then faced with having to move out of the home they now own because they are unable to pay these ridiculous property taxes in retirement," Knause said.

Geier said he and Knause are passionate about the issue.

"We feel that high and constantly increasing property taxes are the biggest issue we face in our community. Our current administration tells us that they are maintaining a stable tax rate. Well, no one pays a tax rate, they pay tax dollars that are increasing at an astounding rate year after year," Geier said.

He went on to state that the current Republican administration’s stable tax rate is a myth.

"They will say they are only responsible for a small portion of our property taxes," Geier said. "Don’t you believe it. The Township Committee affects municipal taxes directly. They have full responsibility for school taxes every time the school budget is voted down, as it was this year."

Additionally, the Democrats believe the current administration has done nothing to attract "good, clean ratable businesses" to the community, a measure they claim would provide much needed services while helping to reduce the tax bill for every homeowner through the taxes the new businesses would pay.

"Plumsted citizens have had enough. We are not our municipality’s ATM," Geier said.

The Democratic candidates said they have received the endorsement of New Jersey U.S. Sen. John Corzine.