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Gov. Murphy announces updated property tax relief program

Gov. Phil Murphy, state Senate President Nicholas Scutari and state Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin have announced the expansion of the ANCHOR tax relief program, making the relief program one of the largest in state history.

ANCHOR, which stands for Affordable New Jersey Communities for Homeowners and Renters, was announced by Murphy in March as part of his Fiscal Year 2023 (FY2023) budget proposal, according to a June 15 press release from the Governor’s office.

The expansion of the program will increase this investment from the nearly $900 million proposed in March to more than $2 billion and will reduce property taxes for more than 1.16 million homeowners and 900,000 renters beginning in FY2023, according to the press release.

“I am proud to stand alongside Speaker Coughlin to announce the delivery of $2 billion in direct property tax relief, which will provide over two million rebates to New Jersey households. This is a truly historic tax relief program for our state,” Murphy was quoted as saying in the press release. “Today we take a step forward on this administration’s promise to make New Jersey a stronger, fairer, more affordable state for our middle class and working families.”

Under the expanded ANCHOR property tax relief program proposal, there will be a full phase-in of rebates and the benefits will be simplified:

• 870,000-plus homeowners with a household income of under $150,000 would receive a $1,500 property tax credit on their property tax bill each year;

• 290,000-plus homeowners with a household income between $150,000 and $250,000 would receive a $1,000 property tax credit on their property tax bill each year;

• 900,000-plus renters with incomes up to $150,000 would receive $450 each year to help offset the rent increases caused by increasing property taxes.

The average New Jersey property tax bill was approximately $9,300 in 2021. ANCHOR’s direct property tax relief rebates could offset more than 16% of the average property tax bill in New Jersey for some homeowners, according to the press release.

For a middle class family receiving the $1,500 in direct relief, the average bill will effectively become $7,800, a property tax level New Jersey has not seen since 2012, according to the press release.

The ANCHOR program expands on and replaces the Homestead Rebate Program, which serves 470,000 homeowners annually and provides an average benefit of $628.

Renters are not eligible for the current Homestead Rebate Program, but ANCHOR recognizes rents are often raised to offset rising property taxes. ANCHOR will make more than four times more New Jerseyans eligible to receive a property tax rebate when compared with the Homestead Rebate Program, according to the press release from Murphy’s office.

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