Here’s Chris Christie, quoted this morning in the Philadelphia Inquirer, repeating something he’s said before on the radio:
“I also don’t think that we have this overwhelming need for affordable housing in the state, either.”
For the governor who thinks his only responsibilities are for NJ’s already wealthy and moneyed Republicans to float his White House dreams, for the governor who likes his $30,000 luxury hotel weekends, some facts:
New Jersey is the fourth most expensive state in the nation for housing.
What does that mean? Define the Housing Wage as the hourly wage a family needs to earn – working 40 hours a week, 52 weeks a year – to be able to afford the rent and utilities for a safe, modest home in the private housing market. For New Jersey, that number is $24.92.
The actual mean wage for a New Jersey renter? That’s $16.34 an hour, below the housing wage for a modest, safe 2-bedroom. At that wage, an individual would have to work 61 hours a week to afford that 2-BR apartment at a fair market rent. Now how about at minimum wage? A minimum wage worker in NJ would have to put in 121 hours a week to afford that 2-BR at fair market rent. Stop now, and consider that that’s about 176,000 of Gov. Christie’s constituents.
The guy who doesn’t think we need affordable housing in NJ? He lives HERE:
I asked Adam Gordon, a friend and ally of Blue Jersey’s and attorney for Fair Share Housing Center, which has been trying to hold the Christie administration accountable to the housing needs of NJ’s residents, to comment on the Governor’s statement. This is what he said:
Governor Christie has lost touch with the experience of working and middle class New Jerseyans who struggle to afford a decent place to live. New Jersey is the fourth most expensive state in the country, with the nation’s highest foreclosure rate. Gov. Christie’s head in the sand approach to New Jersey’s housing crisis has made the economic recovery harder for thousands of New Jersey families – and is a big part of the story of why New Jersey lags the rest of the country in economic recovery.