Razing of prison adds to state’s crushing debt

If Gov. Jon Corzine is still wondering why he lost his bid for a second term, he need look no further than his decision to close and raze Camden’s Riverfront State Prison. The decision is yet another glaring example of Trenton’s absolute disregard for taxpayers, as it is a stark and blatant waste of their hard-earned money.

For four years, Gov. Corzine boasted of his efforts to protect the vulnerable and those not able to help themselves. Little did he realize, New Jersey’s taxpayer now falls into that category due to years of unrelenting tax hikes and crushing state debt.

Faced with a billion-dollar deficit in the current fiscal year and knowing full well the state was facing an $8 to $10 billion shortfall in the upcoming fiscal year, Gov. Corzine chose yet again to put the interests of a few before that of the common good when he gave his blessing to the demolition of one of the state’s newest prisons.

Not only is this scheme to eliminate a publicly owned facility worth $31 million a waste of our very limited public resources, but taxpayers will have to pay even more to house an overflow of state prisoners in county jails.

At a time when our families are being crushed by the highest property taxes in the nation, the state should not be putting the interests of one city and one neighborhood ahead of every property taxpayer in New Jersey.
James Holzapfel
10th District