Today, the Governor signed the budget legislation that was passed by the Legislature yesterday, June 29th. The upcoming Fiscal Year runs from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023. This year's legislative budget totals $50.6 billon in state funds - a total increase of $1.7 billion from the Governor's proposed budget in March - and allocated $24 billion in federal funds. Revenue projections from FY22 increased as the final months of the current fiscal year closed out, providing a nearly $11 billion surplus of unanticipated revenues. The budget bill reserves some $6 billion of the excess revenue.
The Budget was also supplemented by numerous other bills providing funds for programs, including the below.
- The Legislature and Administration came to an agreement for a property tax relief program with about $2 billion savings for taxpayers making under $250,000 annually given the large surplus.
- A sales tax holiday for back-to-school supplies which encompasses sports and recreational items, computers, and other supplies.
- A fee holiday initiative was agreed to for waivers on drivers license renewals, marriage licenses, licenses for certain health care professionals and residents visiting state parks, saving residents an estimated $60 million.
- The bill also includes a second consecutive full pension payment at nearly $7 billion.
- $5.2 billion will been allocated for debt defeasance and avoidance.
- $2 billion will go to new school construction, and $1.7 billion additional funding will go to direct state aid for public schools although the formula will remain underfunded by $600 million.
- The New Jersey Child Tax Credit program will provide tax credits for families making under $80,000 annually.
- Increased opportunities for low income housing and down payment assistance.
- Increased funding for mental health care funding for pediatric and adult populations.
- Funding for lead remediation and transportation infrastructure projects.
Although there have been record-breaking surpluses, legislative leadership has been hesitant about over-allocating funding or excessive rebates for some items given the economic outlook at this point. We do not expect that the Legislature will meet as regularly during the summer, if at all. Speaker Coughlin did comment today that the members may return to consider addressing concealed carry laws given the recent decision from the U.S. Supreme Court.