Tax break in return for volunteer service propsed in NJ

 Assemblyman Joe Lagana said his bill is a creative way to provide seniors with some much-needed help. (Phil Gregory/WHYY)

Assemblyman Joe Lagana said his bill is a creative way to provide seniors with some much-needed help. (Phil Gregory/WHYY)

A New Jersey lawmaker is proposing a tax break for some older residents who pitch in to help out.

 

Assemblyman Joe Lagana, who said it’s a creative way to provide seniors with some much-needed help, proposes that residents 60 or older who’ve lived in their own home at least 15 years would get a property tax credit of up to $1,000 for doing volunteer work for their local municipality.

“The senior tax freeze and the homestead rebates just aren’t what they were years ago,” he said. “A lot of people ask why residents are always moving out of New Jersey when they retire. It’s for reasons like this. It’s just become unaffordable.”

It would be up to each town to determine the type of volunteer services that would be eligible for the tax credit.

“We’d be leaving it up to the municipality to decide what type of volunteering people can do — whether it’s at a fall festival or a winter carnival, or acting as a crossing guard, or waiting in the morning while the kids get off the school bus just to make sure they get in the school OK,” said Lagana, D-Bergen.

However, the bill stipulates that municipalities could not use the volunteers to replace salaried workers.

 

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