NJ Budget Enacted, Goverment Shutdown Ends

Jul 4, 2017

Senate President Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Prieto announce budget agreement that ends government shutdown.

New Jersey’s state government shutdown is over and state parks, recreation areas, and historic sites will be open on the Independence Day Holiday.

An agreement on legislation to change the way the state regulates Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield paved the way for Assembly approval of a new budget shortly after midnight.

“I declare the bill passed. New Jersey is back on.”

Assembly Speaker Vinnie Prieto says the Horizon measure puts a limit on the reserves the state’s largest insurer can keep.

“After capping the reserves anything in excess goes back to the subscribers. And we made sure that there’s nothing in here that’s going to be able to harm that company, and those 3.8 million residents would not see increases in premiums.”

In return for giving him that legislation, Governor Christie says he’s not vetoing the $350 million in additional spending items Democratic lawmakers added to his budget plan.

“It’s not the spending that I would have chosen, but that’s the nature of compromise.”

Senate President Steve Sweeney says the budget Christie signed includes an increase in state funding for schools. Christie calls it the best budget in 10 years.