Gov. Phil Murphy signed a US $ 38.7 billion state budget on Sunday, but not before he had canceled $ 48.5 million of legislature spending and frozen up to $ 235 million in additional spending from one of legislators controlled by his compatriots.
Murphy At a press conference in Trenton, he said he had used his powerful veto to cut down legal phrases that he mocked as "pork," and his broad executive powers to confiscate hundreds of millions more by 1.3 To lock in billions of dollars surplus.
"We must stop spending what we should not have and what we do not have," said the governor.
Murphy said his state finance department was still working to block spending, but it was up to the administration to decide if and when to release the money. This would only be the case if the legislature's proposed savings occur, tax revenues exceed expectations for the next year, or if the legislature approves a tax hike.
The Senate and Assembly of the State passed the budget more than a week ago Murphy rejected the progressive governor's call for higher taxes and fees for millionaires, opiate manufacturers, gun owners, bear hunters, and companies that do not provide health services Provide employees.
Murphy just signed them a few days after announcing that he would not close the government in an effort to strongly arm democratic legislators to implement his plans to raise taxes for people earning more than $ 1
This is the second year in a row that Murphy has missed his wish to tax millionaires and earn more than half a billion dollars in new tax revenue for New Jersey.
He said on Sunday, "We will not give up." Murphy said he wanted to assure residents and visitors to New Jersey that politics would not spoil their planned July 4th celebration or shut down key state services in line with its priorities. While he can not add expenses or new taxes, he can reduce revenues, expenses, and the language that articulates how the state can be spent like money.
He reduced legislative premiums of $ 48.5 million, including $ 38 million of the legislature's $ 48 million, had sought school consolidation and municipal joint services, $ 5 million for Cooper University Health Care, $ 4 million for the school's election, $ 1 million for the East Orange General Hospital, and $ 500,000 for Rutgers-Camden research cuts, although the Senate President, Stephen Sweeney, D-Gloucester, on Sunday expressed no desire.
And while Murphy denied that the cut for Cooper University Health Care was a direct shot at Sweeney, his closest ally and Murphy opponent George Norcross III. Is chairman of the board. Sweeney replied that the hit was "not unexpected" and "punishing".
"We know what it's about," he said.
The governor retained $ 50 million from lawmakers added to NJ Transit, $ 50 million for exceptional special education, and $ 65 million for wage increases for direct service providers who help people with developmental disabilities and work at subsidized day care centers ,
"With this budget, New Jersey can do many good and overdue things," said Murphy. "Make a historic investment in public education. Continue with the reversal of NJ Transit and make up for the years of neglect. Ensure a more direct relief of property tax. In spite of the attacks from Washington. "
" But it is undoubtedly also a bit too short, because it's too short because we were all elected to tackle the difficult issues – Not to find the easy way out And too often This budget offers an easy way out, "he continued.
It is unclear how much of the over $ 100 million in smaller grants will be donated to charities such as boys 'and girls' clubs in New Jersey and the Latino Action Network, as well as to local projects such as Restoring Electricity in the Franklin Township placed on the order of Murphy's executive in Sequester.
Unlike the vetoes, the legislature can not abolish the governor's executive and freeze more than $ 200 million in spending.
Sweeney said at a news conference on Sunday that he was not worried about freezing, and the legislature's promised confident savings and revenues would change.
"If his word is good and revenues come in and these revenues are released," I agree, "he said.
Former Governor Chris Christie, a Republican, used a similar maneuver in signing the budget in 2016, when he invested $ 100 million in reserves and threatened to cut a tax agreement with Pennsylvania, it Unless democratic legislation has helped reduce its employees' healthcare costs by $ 250 million.
As governor, Murphy also has the sole authority to certify tax revenues, so he can disregard the estimates of how much the state will take over the next 12 months. Estimates by the legislature are higher than those estimated by the administration.
The legislature's budget assumes that fewer companies will redeem tax credits granted by the state economic development agency and estimate their corporate income tax revenues $ 175 million higher than Murphy's and its insurance premiums estimate estimates over $ 100 million.
Legislators also expected New Jersey to collect $ 100 million from the repatriation of foreign dividends that Murphy did not include in its spending plan.
A senior government official said the government did not buy them The legislature justified these rosy estimates and reduced revenue estimates by $ 213 million.
The final budget projects, which will end with a surplus of $ 1.3 billion, will contribute $ 3.8 billion to the public sector pension system and expand the Senior Freeze real estate tax relief program. Doubling the income tax deduction for veterans to $ 6,000, increasing K-12 school funding assistance by more than $ 200 million and $ 75 million new dollars to NJ Transit.
It increases from 2 percent to 3 percent of a tax paid by HMOs] firstname.lastname@example.org . Follow her on Twitter @samanthamarcus .
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