Lonegan opposes open space bond act
Wednesday, October 14th, 2009
By: Phil Gregory
Former Republican gubernatorial candidate Steve Lonegan has formed a committee to push for the defeat of the proposed open space bond act in New Jersey.
The proposal to spend $400 million dollars for open space preservation is the only statewide ballot question for voters to decide in next month's election.
Lonegan says with a projected $8 billion budget shortfall next year, the state can't afford it.
Lonegan: No one even knows the true costs. Not only the economic costs from the effects on the economy by taking this land out of the tax rolls and out of the development cycle but the costs of preserving that land annually.
Acting Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Mark Mauriello says the bond issue is important.
Mauriello: We certainly recognize the importance but also we recognize it's a tough time. People may think there are other priorities but that's the beauty of letting voters decide the question.
Environmentalists say the bond act is needed to protect the water supply and wildlife and preserve farmland.