TRENTON – Senate President Richard J. Codey, D-Essex, released the following statement today regarding Senate approval of S-2007, a $30.8 billion budget plan for FY 2007:
“This budget is a blueprint for a sound fiscal future. In addition to Governor Corzine’s cuts, we’ve managed to include an additional half billion dollars in spending reductions, while keeping our priorities focused on those who need it most – seniors, working families, children and the medically underserved. Medicaid recipients will see their out-of-pocket costs reduced. Students struggling to better themselves through higher education will see state aid restored. Homeland security, cancer research, child advocacy programs – all will benefit from this extremely humane budget.
“In the short term, this budget provides assistance for those who need it most. In the long term, it enables us to steadily chip away at the state’s structural deficit, meet our contractual obligations and restore solvency to our pension system. We’ve used the lessons learned in hindsight to build a budget based on foresight. The blue ink that will sign this bill into law, will help us erase the red ink that has consumed our state for too long.
“It’s unfortunate that the residents of our state were forced to endure a disruption in government services, but in the end the three branches of government have been able to come together to produce a budget that is a victory for our citizens and our economic future. It lays the groundwork for Governor Corzine’s vision to develop a forward-looking budget that also paves the way for billions of dollars in property tax relief over the next decade. In the coming weeks, we’ll begin to build on that foundation and address the other factors contributing to our property tax rates, bringing real relief to our hardworking taxpayers.