We are among the wealthiest New Jerseyans. We value the quality of life in our state. We believe New Jersey should have top-notch public schools and universities, well-funded public services, hospitals, parks, and public transportation, all paid for through a progressive federal, state and local tax structure.
We agree that New Jersey’s transportation infrastructure is in dire need of improvement, long overdue for adequate funding, so we applaud our elected officials’ intention to replenish the state’s Transportation Trust Fund. These infrastructure improvements benefit all of our citizens, but especially those at the lowest economic rungs who stand to pay less in transportation costs and car repairs. But this new revenue should not be paired with tax cuts for the wealthy.
At current levels, each signatory below would pay the estate tax in New Jersey. As citizens who are among the wealthiest 5% of residents in our beloved state, we have both the means and the responsibilityto contribute more to the needs of our state. We strongly object to the proposal to eliminate New Jersey’s estate tax on people like ourselves as part of the transportation bill.
The estate tax is not only an important source of revenue, but is also our only tax on accumulated fortunes, the bulk of which have never been subject to capital gains taxation. It would be a travesty to give a tax break to a small cohort of wealthy families (including ourselves) at the expense of adequately funding schools, health care, public infrastructure and other pressing needs in the state.
Eliminating New Jersey’s estate tax after 100 years would be a short-sighted mistake. We urge Governor Christie and the legislature to REMOVE this provision from the Transportation Trust Fund bill (S-2411; A-12). A more responsible plan would be to raise the exemption level to $2 million per person, which would exempt 78% of current estates but preserve 72% of the roughly $300 million in annual revenue from the estate tax.
Diane Abel, Bloomfield • Elizabeth Bates, Princeton • Ira Belsky, Franklin Lakes • Theodore Chase, Jr., Princeton • Jun Choi, Edison • William Corwin, Princeton • Elizabeth Counselman, Princeton • David Drukaroff, Lakewood • Wilma Emmerich, Princeton • Grover Furr, Bloomfield • Eliane Geren, Princeton • Elizabeth Gibson, Princeton • Steve Gold, Caldwell • Carol Golden, Princeton • Ed Gracely, Sicklerville • Brian Greenberg, Shrewsbury • Lonnie Hanauer, West Orange • Stephanie Harris, Hopewell • Joann Held, Pennington • Fred Hillmann, Union • Matthew House, North Brunswick • Jeffrey Keefe, Lakewood • Pat Kenschaft and Frederick Chichester, Upper Montclair • Shelley Krause, Princeton • James Litvack, Princeton • Carleton Montgomery, Medford • Diane Riley, Madison • Beth and Andrew Rothman, Princeton • Eric Schoenberg, Franklin Lakes • Jane Silverman, Princeton • Robert Steinbaum, Montclair • Kevin Walker, Collingswood • Karl Walko, Audubon • Torry Watkins, Hightstown • David B. Wilson, Jersey City • Susan N. Wilson, Princeton • Francis Wood, Mendham
Last Friday, Governor Christie announced that he and legislative leaders had reached a long-overdue agreement to replenish New Jersey's Transportation Trust Fund. Under the agreement, the earned income tax credit (EITC) would be strengthened, and sales taxes would be lowered. But the accord also includes a poison pill, which is the complete elimination of New Jersey's estate tax. If your household net assets are over $675,000 and you live in New Jersey, please add your name to the list of people telling Gov. Christie to PRESERVE THE ESTATE TAX!Read more
We are excited to introduce you to an amazing 2016 “Liberation Economics” class from across the nation – representing communities from Anchorage, Alaska to Washington DC, from Cambridge, MA to rural Kentucky.
This year we are offering more scholarship money than ever before.
We know the work for Economic Justice MUST be accessible to those who are the most deeply affected by economic inequalities.
That's why we need you.
As a small not-for-profit organization, we are asking for your support in assuring we can continue the vital work of education for movement building far into the future. We hope that you will pay your wisdom forward.
We are asking you to lead with us as you have so many times in the past: grassroots funding for grassroots movement building.
Your donation is an investment in the leaders our movements need now more than ever.
The Popular Education Team: Jeannette, Riahl, and Eroc
“United for a Fair Economy is excited to once again present LIBERATION ECONOMICS, an advanced training for experienced facilitators! For 20 years UFE has facilitated hundreds of workshops and trainings on Popular Economics Education around the country. This year UFE is honored to partner with the Highlander Center and Equipo Maiz from El Salvador to provide an advanced training for experienced organizers and facilitators. This training will provide participants with tools for facilitating conversations about capitalism, racism and sexism that are meaningful, highly interactive and even fun!”
A little over a year ago, United for a Fair Economy released State of the Dream 2015: Underbanked and Overcharged. This groundbreaking report looks at the banking industry from the perspective of low-wage workers and people of color. We are thrilled to be sharing a small victory that has happened partly because of this report and the policy solutions it proposed.Read more
According to a recent quarterly earnings report, GE is doing fantastically well, bringing in $23.5 billion in orders and income during the first three months of 2016. It has done so well, in fact, it bought back $6 billion worth of stock, while also giving $2 billion worth of dividends to shareholders.
In the face of this incredibly profitable three months, it seems almost laughable that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the City of Boston—spearheaded by Governor Baker and Mayor Walsh—have committed to shelling out over $270 million in public funds for the luxury of moving some several hundred white-collar workers to Boston’s Seaport Innovation District.Read more
In 2009, New York State was facing a $15-20 billion budget deficit, and nobody was talking about taxing the wealthy. Responsible Wealth (a project of United for a Fair Economy) wrote an open letter, signed by 100 upper-income New Yorkers, and suddenly the conversation changed. It was renewed in 2011, but now the temporary tax rates are set to expire again, and it's time for a permanent, more progressive tax on upper income New Yorkers.Read more
We send our condolences to the family and friends from Berta Cáceres and the Honduran people who has fought by her side. Unfortunately in much of the US media coverage, there has been a glaring omission about Berta’s death.Read more
A national group of experts focused on building an inclusive society laid out a set of characteristics they are seeking in the next nominee for Supreme Court Justice. The Experts of Color Network calls for a constitutional visionary with a deep appreciation for the nation’s diversity and an understanding of how historical laws, policies and practices have shaped opportunity and adversity today.Read more
In 2014, there were some 11.3 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States. If you are, or have met someone from a mixed-status family, you likely know the constant stress and strain it can put on people. The recently published book, Dreams Deported: Immigrant Youth and Families Resist Deportation, lifts the stories of the undocumented immigrants who are facing the injustice of deportation.Read more
Governor Rick Snyder was inaugurated on January 1, 2010. Coming from big business and venture capital, he only took six weeks in office to propose a radical redistribution of the state’s shrinking tax base.Read more
Lead, racism and poverty poisoned the Flint water supply. Add in a tablespoon of media silence and a gallon of government denial, and you’ve got a two year crisis that Michigan Governor Snyder has called, “…his Katrina” – alluding to the Bush administration’s disaster of hurricane management.
New movements call for new solutions. And this year, we’re taking a new approach to our annual State of the Dream report.Read more