Christie issues veto of contracting and jobs database bill

Gov. Chris Christie issued a conditional veto on Thursday of a bill that would provide a central online clearinghouse of all local government contracting and employment opportunities.

As part of the veto, Christie nixed the requirement for job information to appear on the site as it should mainly offer “procurement opportunities.”

“As a general matter individuals looking for government employment will not be interested in contracting opportunities and business seeking to enter into commercial contracts with the government will not be looking for employment opportunities,” Christie said in his veto message.

The governor said two other state departments already provide employment and job search resources.

Christie also favors expanding the scope of the registry to include school contracting opportunities to make the site a “one stop location” for contractors searching for local contract opportunities.

 As written, the legislation outlined the format for entries to the website, but Christie said the requirements were different than those called for in a request for proposals specifications.  As part of the veto, Christie said the specs should be identical to eliminate confusion and duplication.

The governor also expressed concerns about potential litigation arising from the site and pushed for a disclaimer in the bill that any failure to post a contract on the database does not invalidate a contract.

The bill now goes back to sponsors state Sens. Linda Greenstein, (D-14) and Donald Norcross (D-5) and Assembly Representatives Ruben Ramos (D-33), Wayne DeAngelo (D-14) and Annette Quijano, (D-20).

Christie issues veto of contracting and jobs database bill