State of New Jersey
Executive Order #88

Governor Christine Todd Whitman

WHEREAS, I appointed the members of the Property Tax Commission in December 1997 and charged them with recommending ways to help county school and municipal officials ease the heavy burden of property taxes on New Jersey residents; and

WHEREAS, the Commission has held 10 meetings, numerous subcommittee meetings and four public hearings to gather data and opinions from private citizens, policy experts, local officials and State legislators; and

WHEREAS, the Commission sought to address both the cost of New Jersey's method of providing local government services as well as the State's historically heavy reliance on the property tax to fund these government services; and

WHEREAS, the Commission has concluded that while New Jersey citizens ought to continue holding local control in deciding which services they will receive, it is equally important for New Jersey to reduce property taxes by finding more efficient ways to provide these services; and

WHEREAS, the Commission recommends, therefore, that New Jersey implement a host of legislative and regulatory changes to encourage sharing of services; and

WHEREAS, the Commission has made specific recommendations urging State government agencies to take an active role in encouraging and facilitating shared and regional services; and

WHEREAS, I agree that State agencies can and should encourage and facilitate shared and regional services wherever appropriate;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, CHRISTINE TODD WHITMAN, Governor of the State of New Jersey, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the statutes of this State, do hereby ORDER and DIRECT:

1. All State agencies shall review their rules, regulations and program requirements that might impact the implementation of interlocal shared service programs or activities to identify within the next ten months, and thereafter remove where appropriate, any restrictions or impediments to such programs or activities.

2. All State agencies that regulate local activities or conduct local program analyses, including the Local Government Budget Review Program, upon request by one or more localities, shall provide coordinated staff assistance to local officials with planning and evaluating new interlocal shared service programs and activities.

3. The Department of Education and the Department of Community Affairs shall work together to encourage interlocal cooperative efforts between school districts and municipalities.

4. The Commissioner of Education shall conduct studies to identify within the next six months existing models of regional and shared services among school districts and shall thereafter, where appropriate, develop new models. Such models may pertain to general education or central office functions, including management, administrative, and support services. The Commissioner shall promote regionalization and shared services by establishing workshops and showcases where school officials can share their experiences and accomplishments and by publishing and distributing highlights of successful efforts.

5. This Order shall take effect immediately.

GIVEN, under my hand and seal,
this 16th day of September in the
Year of Our Lord, One Thousand
Nine Hundred and Ninety-Eight,
and of the Independence of the
United States, the Two Hundred
and Twenty-Third.

/s/ Christine Todd Whitman



/s/ John J. Farmer, Jr.
Chief Counsel to the Governor