Saturday, November 07, 2009

Christie Meets With Government and Business Leaders At The Shore

Governor Elect Chris Christie and Lieutenant Governor Elect Kim Guadagno visited with Ocean County Mayors and Monmouth County business owners yesterday.

In his meeting with the Mayors, Christie reaffirmed his committment to "gut COAH" and to reform the culture of DEP, according to the Asbury Park Press.

"We're going to continue to be aggressive in protecting the environment," Christie said, adding that he recognizes the economic importance of a clean environment for the Shore counties. For Barnegat Bay, Christie said he will seek a solution for the issue of cooling water discharge from the Oyster Creek nuclear power plant — although he stopped short of an outright commitment to requiring that cooling towers be built at the 40-year-old reactor.

The Press reports that Christie resisted the Mayors' call to end binding arbitration for police officers.

"I think for folks who can't strike, they need binding arbitration," Christie said. "There may be some tinkering we can do." Christie said he will also talk to rank-and-file police and fire union members, who supported him in his run for the governor's seat.

Asbury Park Press photo

The meeting with business owners, members of the Northern Monmouth Chamber of Commerce, took place at Guttenplan's Frozen Dough Specialist on Route 36 in Middletown, where company President Abe Littenburg gave Christie, Guadagno and Senator Joe Kryillos a tour of the plant.

Bill Saloukas, owner of Broad Waverly Staffing, Red Bank, expressed concerns about the sky rocketing cost of workers compensation insurance and urged Christie and Guadagno to allow for more competition in that market.

Cliff Moore, owner of IHOP franchises in Keyport and Neptune, urged a renewed commitment to tourism promotion and to revitalizing the Route 36 and 35 corridors. Spiro Pappas, owner of the Comfort Inn, Middletown said that more of the revenue generated by the hotel tax should be used for tourism advertising.

The costs of health care, unemployment taxes and abuses and regionalization of municipals governments were among the other concerns expressed by members of the group.

Guadagno said that Christie had charged her with reviewing all state regulations during the first 90 days of their administration. Christie noted that they will be relying on business groups for suggestions for regulatory reform. "We want to impact the regulations that are hurting businesses," he said, "we're not interested in going through an exercise of review and to change regulations are not a problem."

Christie noted that the top income tax rate of 10.75% is set to expire in June and that he would not renew it.


ML said...

These people need to read The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith.

They are seeking benefits for their businesses from government.

Why should government take my taxes and spend them on promoting a particular Business like tourism. Tax business less and all businesses will have more money available to promote their own business and I will have more money to spend at their business.

Come on people wake up> The best way for Government to help business is to loeave it alone.

Down with subsidies!

Anonymous said...

FAIR (flat) tax now!

COAH said...

Instead of "gutting" COAH, Christie needs to eliminate it. Do the Republicans in the Senate and Assembly have the courage to stand behind him in support of eliminating COAH?

Anonymous said...

The only way to eliminate COAH is to amend the state constitution to eliminate the absurd court imposed idea that the constitution guarantees affordable housing.

Anonymous said...

Want to address the issue of property taxes?

Then you must address the issue of current school funding methodologies.

No funding by residential property tax. Would necessitate going to an income tax, benefiting seniors who are struggling to stay in their homes.

Parents pay for maintenance,security and transportation.

Consolidate all school districts into a county wide district, with a central administration for hiring/firing/purchasing/transportation and negotiations.

Local districts keep school boards with input only on course content and extra-curricular activity.

COAH said...

Bottom line is Christie needs to be bold in his reforms. This will frighten the Republican Senators and Assemblymen because their nature is to seek compromise or approval from the democrats (and newspapers). If they stand with Christie, they will prevail. People follow leadership (something the R's have forgotten).

Michael Laffey said...

Consolidation will not and has never saved money anywhere. Even Lucille Davies has acknowlwdged consolidation will not save money. Look at your biggest school districts. Are their per student costs lower then smaller districts. The answer is no.
Take Middletown for instance. That is a huge district. Their per pupil costs are not notiocably different then that of much smaller districts.

All consolidation will achieve is giving local schools governed by the community over to big government bureaucracy.

That consolidation will save money is a dangerous myth.

Anonymous said...

all quite good suggestions, but a big one is to STOP the old-Abbott toilet-flush of dollars, and you have a start..more accountability for the schools is very huge..STOP the insane over-regulation, and the nit-picking and constant fine, fee, toll and penalty increases every five minutes, bleeding everyone to death! and, give the small businesses tax breaks/cuts, or this awful unemployment will never improve here!