SALEM, N.H. — speaking on the campaign trail in New Hampshire, Gov. Chris Christie said he has no plans to raise New Jersey’s gas tax. The Republican presidential candidate, fielding a heated question from a former New Jersey resident angered for being forced to leave the Garden State because he said the cost of living was too high, argued that the state’s taxes are already too high. “I’ll tell you what I’m not going to do, I’m not going to increase the gas tax while you’re sitting here and complaining to me about every other tax being too high, but you want me to spend money on roads,” Christie said. “Well, I’ve spent money on roads and we have the second lowest gas tax in America.”
The state Legislature on Monday voted overwhelmingly to ask voters to constitutionally dedicate all revenue from gas taxes to transportation projects. In September, Christie insisted he wouldn’t consider raising the state’s gas tax to replenish states rapidly evaporating Transportation Trust Fund unless Democrats agree to other tax cuts first. Instead, he said he would consider signing such an increase, provided it included “tax fairness” for New Jersey residents. There was no mention of tax fairness during his the town hall in Bow, N.H. on Wednesday. Christie also batted away the suggestion that the state’s Transportation Trust Fund is depleted. “And by the way, the Transportation Trust Fund is not broke, so let’s get on that one too,” he said. “I’ve spent $3.2 billion a year, every year on my governorship on fixing roads and bridges in the state of New Jersey. And it’s not broke.” However, the fund is slated to run out of money for new projects this summer, with existing revenue swallowed by debt payments.