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While the average homeowner pays about 5 percent of their paycheck toward public schools, residents in some towns typically pay more than twice that, according to an analysis of income and state tax data.
Many middle class towns fare worst, the analysis found.
While some towns, like Upper Saddle River or Mendham, pay an average of more than $12,000 in property taxes toward local schools, incomes are far higher than the rest of the state, lowering the burden on residents.
And some of the poorest districts are heavily subsidized by state aid, decreasing the burden there, too.
That leaves people in places such as Lodi stuck in the middle, with nearly 12 percent of their pay earmarked for education.