Senate Budget Comm. to convene Monday

TRENTON – The Senate Budget Committee will convene Monday at 9 a.m. to consider the budget proposed by the Senate Democrats.

Late today, the Assembly scheduled a Budget Committee meeting for noon Monday.

Introduced on Thursday, The majority party’s proposal is projected at more than $30 billion, compared to Gov. Christie’s proposed $29.4 billion budget.

The two plans diverge on program spending priorities and on how they will be paid for, with Democrats also saying Thursday they would use a separate bill to reintroduce the millionaire’s tax.

Earlier today, Gov. Christie slammed the Democrats’ plan as “more of the same unrealistic, pie in the sky, fantasy budgeting.”

“This proposal reaffirms the Democrats’ commitment to job-killing tax increases and an unrepentant addiction to spending,” he said.

Later, the top Democrats fired back.

“If the governor wishes to dismiss out-of-hand a balanced budget that does not raise taxes, funds our schools, provides real property tax relief to seniors and protects our most vulnerable without even waiting to read it, that is his right,” Sen. President Steve Sweeney said in a statement.

“But that is irresponsible and an affront to the working families who are shouldering the burden of his past budget decisions.”

And Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver added: “We appreciate the governor’s input, but for all his rhetoric it’s clear his budget policies have done nothing to improve the lives of working class New Jerseyans suffering under his property tax increases and high unemployment.”

Senate Budget Comm. to convene Monday