Letter to the editor, by: Rosemary L’Erario of Eastampton
The Republican tax plan cuts funding for Medicaid, Medicare, food stamps, Head Start, WIC, and childcare assistance, to pay for tax cuts for wealthy donors, the mega-rich and Wall Street. The damage to those of us in New Jersey will be particularly severe, from two key provisions:
Eliminates our deduction for SALT (State & Local Taxes), in effect, a tax INCREASE for those of us who own a home in NJ, when we already pay the highest property taxes in the nation. In Burlington County, the average SALT deduction is $14,000 and 45% of Burlington County households claim the SALT deduction. The loss of this deduction means we are being “double taxed.”
Besides cutting funds for Medicare, Medicaid and the affordable Care Act, the plan ends the medical expense deduction in 2018, which now applies to those who spend >10% of their adjusted gross income on medical or long term care expenses. So, even if we can find a way to pay for higher premiums and copays, there will be no relief for excessive expenses through the medical expense deduction.
This “tax plan” will also hurt our economy and real estate market, dissuading those who might consider a home here, with no property tax relief.
There is no upside in this plan for 99% of us, and it will severely harm New Jersey. We’ve seen this before; Republicans pass huge tax breaks claiming they’ll pay for themselves, and use the resulting huge deficits to justify deep cuts to vital programs for health care, nutrition and education programs. We can’t afford another GOP “tax cut.” It’s time to remind our Members of Congress that they work for us
Editor’s note: The opinions in this letter are the author’s only.
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