Dems, GOP agree: New Jersey budget in bad shape

    By: Monica Miller

    Now that New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine has outlined what some call his “pain on every page” budget to the public, lawmakers and interest groups are discussing which financial remedies will bring much-needed relief.

    By: Monica Miller

    Now that New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine has outlined what some call his “pain on every page” budget to the public, lawmakers and interest groups are discussing which financial remedies will bring much-needed relief.

    Caption: Democratic Majority Leader Senator Steve Sweeney.

    Transcript:
    It’s rare to find common ground at the New Jersey Statehouse. However, everyone agrees the state’s dealing with the worst economic climate in recent memory as lawmakers try to plug a $7 billion budget shortfall. Democratic Majority Leader Senator Steve Sweeney says state businesses face a potential $350 million payroll tax hike to make up for bad business practices in the past.

    Sweeney: “When they started deferring money to charity care, the business community made a deal to lower the unemployment rate. Deal with the devil and what happens is you have to pay him sooner or later.”

    Republican state Senator Tom Kean, Jr. says they’ve suggested numerous ways to get the state out of financial trouble, but the governor hasn’t taken them up on their suggestions.

    Kean, Jr.: “There’s still $68 million of political patronage employees on the payroll in the state of New Jersey. There’s still over $100 million on procurement reforms. This is the way we can start the conversations and start bipartisan solutions.”

    The budget has to be passed by the last day of June.

    Listen:
    Click on the play button below or right click on this link and choose “Save Link As” to download.

    [audio: reports20090311corzine.mp3]

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