Wednesday, June 24, 2015

NJ Gov. and lawmakers diverting more Clean Energy funds


New Jersey’s clean energy fund is being tapped once again by legislators -- this time to provide $20 million for maintenance and salaries for the state’s park system,
NJ Spotlight's Tom Johnson reports
The proposed diversion from the often-raided Clean Energy Fund presumably would retain $20 million for a new open-space preservation program instead of being used to finance parks management as the Christie administration proposed in its spending plan for next year.
Gov. Chris Christie’s proposed budget already is counting on using approximately $152 million from the Clean Energy Fund to finance various energy initiatives and to pay utility bills at state facilities, including NJ Transit.
The persistent withdrawal of money from the Clean Energy Fund by lawmakers and the administration is a source of frustration for clean-energy advocates. More than $1 billion in clean-energy funds has been used to help balance budgets in the past several years. The fund is replenished by surcharges on gas and electric bills for residents and businesses.


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