A last-ditch campaign to bombard state legislators with e-mails is circulating in Glen Ridge — and elsewhere throughout the state — this weekend. The Barista herself had no less than four missives on the subject in her electronic mailbox this Saturday. The e-mails warn of dire consequences if the governor’s education bills, A99 and S1701, which would cap school spending increases a 2.5 percent annually, are adopted on Monday. The campaign is being spearheaded by the Garden State Coalition of Schools, which includes Montclair and Glen Ridge as members.
Carol Harpster, who is heading up the campaign in Glen Ridge, includes a cut-and-paste letter:
Dear Assemblywoman Oliver, Assemblywoman Eagler and Senator Gill,
Senior citizens across the state are telling Governor Jim McGreevey that New Jersey homeowners need relief from our steadily rising property taxes. We agree with them. While we endorse your efforts in that direction, we look to you for more effective leadership. The “Millionaire’s Tax” rebate won’t fix the over reliance on property taxes to support our schools. We continue to ask for a special legislative session that focuses on property tax reform.
We have an immediate concern: Bills introduced last week to enable Governor McGreevey’s proposed school spending cuts-S1701 and A99-will cripple our public school programs. As taxpayers, parents, administrators and supporters of the Garden State Coalition of Schools, we are very worried that provisions in this legislation will provide little real tax relief and further straitjacket our schools.