State Constitution Will Change, Say Voters
Voters approve referendum question on Tuesday's ballot.
The state constitution will change as a result of Tuesday's voting. Results posted this morning show that some 80 percent of voters chose "Yes" on the ballot's referendum question.
The question asked, briefly, if the state should be disallowed from dipping into assessments to state employees' salaries to balance the general fund. Voting "yes" means that the state can apply those assessed funds, including disability and unemployment, only to funds for which they have been gathered. In other words, when the state collects money from a paycheck, and that amount is taken out for disability, that money can be applied only to disability.
The referendum question, the only one on the ballot, was considered likely to pass. The measure was supported by both political parties, and a number of labor and business groups around the state.
The full text of the question follows:
New Jersey Referendums
Shall the amendment to Article VIII, Section II of the State Constitution, agreed to by the Legislature, which: prohibits collection by the State of assessments based solely on employee wages and salaries for any purpose other than providing employee benefits; dedicates all employer and employee contributions collected for any employee benefit fund, and all returns on investments of those contributions, to the purpose of that fund; and prohibits any transferring, borrowing, appropriating or using of those contributions or returns for any other purpose, be approved?
This proposed constitutional amendment prohibits the collection by the State of assessments based on employee wages and salaries for any purpose except paying employee benefits (or making other employee-authorized or federally required payments, in the case of the State's own employees), dedicates all contributions made to the unemployment compensation fund, the State disability benefits fund, or any other employee benefit fund, and all returns on investments of those contributions, to the purpose of that fund, and prohibits the use of those contributions or returns for any other purpose. The requirements of this proposed amendment do not apply to the gross income tax, which is exclusively dedicated by the Constitution to the purpose of reducing or offsetting local property taxes.