N.J. lawmakers left to find funds to fulfill school ruling

    New Jersey lawmakers now face the task of determining where to get the additional money the state Supreme Court has ordered for low-income school districts.

    Gov. Chris Christie says it’s up to the Legislature to revise his budget plan to provide the extra $500 million for the 31 former Abbott districts following the Supreme Court ruling Tuesday.

    But Assembly budget committee chairman Lou Greenwald says Christie should be a partner with lawmakers in altering the proposed state budget to comply with the court’s order.

    “It is the governor’s responsibility to put forward a budget. His budget is not constitutionally sound. He needs to go back and present one that we can work from,” said Greenwald. “I don’t think that he can pass the buck to us just because it’s a tough decision.”

    Senate President Steve Sweeney is calling for up to $1 billion to be spent on all 205 underfunded school districts in the state. He said higher than anticipated tax revenues could pay for much of that while re-examining the entire budget plan could yield the rest.

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