NJ Gov Declares Fiscal "Emergency," Freezes Spending

Posted: Feb 12, 2010 12:19 AM
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, R, said Thursday the state's budget was "in shambles" and announced an immediate spending freeze on all state spending.  Christie announced drastic cuts in spending, including cuts in school districts sporting surpluses--a move that is infuriating NJ Dems.

By declaring a "fiscal emergency," Christie invokes executive powers delegated to him under NJ law to freeze spending and bypass working with the state legislature to reign in an out-of-control budget.  "Today we are going to act swiftly to fix problems too long ignored. Today I begin to do what I promised the people of New Jersey I would do," Christie said.

Local news reports the governor also plans to cut state subsidies to the New Jersey transit system, saying it needs become fiscally efficient--what a novel idea!
"Revisit its rich union contracts," Christie said. "And they may also have to consider service reductions or fare increases."

"It's really foolish. It undermines not only the environment but our economy because people need transit to get to work," said Jeff Tittel of the Sierra Club.

But one tax group applauded the governor.

"Yes it's going to be difficult to make some of these choices as were highlighted today, but education, health care and these things tend to be sacred cow and they need to be taken out of that category," said Jerry Cantrell of the Taxpayers' Association of New Jersey.