The only Indian-American State Senator in New Jersey, Vin Gopal, calls property taxes in his state “astronomical” and says “serious steps” need to be taken to reduce them.
Gopal has taken the lead and introduced a bill (S3266) requiring the consolidation of some of New Jersey’s smallest municipalities with populations of less than 1,000 residents into more highly populated municipalities, in a bid to stem out-migration from the state.
“New Jersey’s property tax rates are absolutely out of control, placing an undue burden on our hardworking homeowners,” Gopal said in a newsletter, adding, “Drastic steps must now be taken to ameliorate this major issue. and municipal spending problems, I am confident that this is a step in the right direction. If we don’t take drastic measures soon, New Jersey will continue to lose residents to less expensive states.”
Other issues Gopal, a businessman, and the Majority Conference Leader in the Senate, is focused on is protecting non-profits against crimes and supporting local breweries, and has introduced bills he hopes will make it through the Senate.
Crimes committed against community-minded non-profit organizations are particularly egregious, according to Gopal, who started a non-profit early in his business career. His bill, S3224, seeks to strengthen prosecutions against individuals who steal from non-profit organizations.
“Our local non-profit organizations exist solely to serve the residents of our great state and uplift some of our most vulnerable populations. When an individual steals from a non-profit, they are actually stealing from those who need the support and resources provided by these organizations the most. We cannot allow these despicable crimes to go unchecked,” Gopal said.
And as a small business owner himself, Gopal says he understands how important it is to provide resources and support to local business owners.
Recently, he has been working with brewery owners in Monmouth County and was also a vocal opponent of the State Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control’s (ABC) restrictions on breweries, “which would have had significant detrimental impacts on this vital industry and were ultimately reversed,” Gopal notes.
His bill, S3155, amends current law governing breweries, to allow microbreweries hold on-site and off-site special events and a number of other regulations enabling them to expand their outreach.