Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Budget, Horizon bills signed, New Jersey shutdown ends

After three days of political posturing, dueling news conferences, beach parties for a some, wanted posters by the governor blaming the entire mess on the Assembly speaker (and providing the public with his photo and phone number) and aerial photography by the Star-Ledger that triggered amusing Internet memes, the New Jersey Legislature and governor came to an agreement late last night on a state budget and legislation to restructure Horizon Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Gov. Christie signed both bills. Government functions will return to normal tomorrow.

Following are a few news stories that wrap it up. In the days ahead we can expect opinion pieces that assign blame and declare winners and losers. 

Christie signs N.J. budget, ending 3-day government shutdown

Ryan Hutchins and Katie Jennings report for Politico/NJ:

Gov. Chris Christie and lawmakers ended New Jersey’s first state government shutdown in more than a decade, settling a bitter feud over an unrelated bill that had left the Statehouse in disarray for two weeks.

In votes after midnight, both houses of the Legislature passed the state budget and the companion legislation, sending the measures to Christie, who was waiting with pen in hand. The governor announced at 2:39 a.m. that that he signed the budget into law, the last and most contentious spending plan of his two terms in office.


Gov. Chris Christie and lawmakers ended New Jersey’s first state government shutdown in more than a decade, settling a bitter feud over an unrelated bill that had left the Statehouse in disarray for two weeks.

In votes after midnight, both houses of the Legislature passed the state budget and the companion legislation, sending the measures to Christie, who was waiting with pen in hand. The governor announced at 2:39 a.m. that that he signed the budget into law, the last and most contentious spending plan of his two terms in office.




New Jersey will open again as Christie announces end of shutdown

Samantha Marcus reports for NJ.com:

Gov. Chris Christie announced he is ending the three-day state government shutdown that drew outrage for shuttering government offices, courts parks and beaches, while earning him unwanted attention for lounging on the very shoreline he ordered closed.
"Operations will go back to normal on Wednesday morning, with the opening of state business," Christie said late Monday. 

State-run recreation sites will reopen on the Fourth of July, and the full restoration of government operations Wednesday will return about 30,000 furloughed state employees to work. Christie had ordered the second shutdown in state history after the state Legislature failed to deliver him a state budget by the July 1 deadline. 
Visitors to the Garden State's 40 state parks were turned away or forced to decamp. Disappointed would-be drivers were delayed from applying for permits and licenses. And tens of thousands of public workers were pulled off the job.
Christie blamed the state Assembly leader for the budget impasse. But images of Christie and his family sunbathing outside the governor's mansion on Island Beach State Park, a stretch of coastline temporarily closed to the public, came to embody the shutdown and drew national attention to a political fight that aggrieved millions here but likely inconvenienced far fewer. 

Read the full story here

Below, NJTV News video on the agreement 


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