Oh, you’ll find a way. From NJTV:
Middletown has a population of 66,000. The Monmouth County city has horse farms, the beach and Big Mike’s Little Red Store. Middletown Mayor Tony Perry says raising the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour will have a massive impact.
“We have estimated that over the course of the 5-year phase-in period that the minimum wage is set to evolve over, it has a $750,000 impact on our budget. That’s 1.5 percent of our budget,” said Perry.
Perry says that’s not just for wages but for added Social Security taxes and pension contributions. But how will Middletown pay for it?
“The taxpayers of Middletown can be assured that we’re doing everything that we can, budget meetings every single day about how to confront this mandate from Trenton and decide how we’re going to face it. And I can assure you services are not going to be cut, but we’re going to find a way, the best ways, to address this $15 minimum wage,” he said.
Already one senator, Kristin Corrado, has introduced a bill to restore the exemption, saying, “The new minimum wage law is forcing local leaders to make impossible choices.”
The New Jersey League of Municipalities says it’s unlikely towns and townships and boroughs across the state will raise property taxes because of the 2 percent cap to make up for having to pay higher wages.
“And this is all going to fit underneath that cap. I think what it will do, is it will certainly for some services that have a great deal of interface with the public, such as recreation programs, youth programs, beach badges, it’ll likely increase registration fees. It might result in a decrease in hires or a streamlining of the services,” Cerra said.