Peters, Stanfield blast Governor, Democratic caucus for new health premium tax proposal

TRENTON - Assemblyman Ryan Peters and Assemblywoman Jean Stanfield sent a strong message to Governor Phil Murphy and the New Jersey’s Democratic caucus over a new tax proposal that could raise average family health insurance premiums by more than $600.

The 8th District legislators oppose the proposal, which would impose a flat, 2.5 percent tax on health insurance premiums in the state in order to raise $300 million in revenue. An average New Jersey family would see its healthcare cost increase by about $613 annually, according to a report by the nonpartisan affordable healthcare think tank, the Kaiser Family Foundation. The assembly will vote on the bill on Thursday.

“All I can say is, ‘What is this Democratic legislative body doing?’ You are suffocating families and businesses and doing everything you can to decimate the working class in New Jersey,” Peters said.

“This type of flat healthcare tax was repealed federally, last year, by a huge bipartisan margin of Democrats and Republicans because of how much it raised health premiums. New Jersey Democrats are moving the goalposts further left than some of the most liberal Washington politicians,” he continued.

“This is not something New Jersey families and businesses can stand for. The coronavirus pandemic might register as the most difficult time in many peoples’ lives. Having their health insurance premiums possibly increase by this much is devastating. I really hope the other side of the aisle has a change of heart on this before Thursday,” Stanfield said.

“What family can afford an extra $600 right now? What business can afford this tax? Sneaking through this tax while everyone’s attention is focused elsewhere is indefensible,” she continued.