Lesniak Thanks Governor For Ongoing Support

Says Urban Hub Legislation Touted in Keeping Panasonic in-State was Championed by Democrats, Signed by Corzine

TRENTON – In response to Governor Christie’s announcement today of a “new” jobs initiative in the Economic Development Authority (EDA), and his victory lap over a law – signed by Governor Corzine – which was touted in the deal to keep Panasonic in-State, Senator Raymond J. Lesniak issued the following statement:

“I appreciate the Governor’s newfound passion for retaining New Jersey jobs and growing our economy. I can only assume that such passion probably blinded him to the facts surrounding the latest package of initiatives he’s claiming as his own.

“The Governor outlined the GROW NJ program – legislation that I’ve worked on with the Front Office for months to keep jobs in State and expand our economic recovery. This ‘new’ initiative has already been unanimously approved by the Senate, and is well on its way to the Governor’s Desk in order to be signed into law.

“The Governor touted the decision by Panasonic to stay in-state – something that was announced in April at a press event attended by myself, the Lieutenant Governor and Newark Mayor Cory Booker. While it’s great news for the State – and was great news at the time of the original press conference – it hardly rises to the level of current news.

“And finally, the legislation touted for Panasonic’s decision to stay in-state – the original Urban Transit Hub Tax Credit – was signed by Governor Corzine, not Governor Christie, in January of 2008. But it’s great that the sitting governor is still finding out just how useful this economic growth tool has been for New Jersey’s financial recovery.

“At the end of the day, it’s not about who gets the credit for these initiatives, but rather that we’re continually pushing ourselves to come up with new ideas and new proposals to stabilize our economy. Rather than focusing his energy on patting himself on the back, I would hope that Governor Christie would instead work with Legislative Democrats to advance new ideas designed to compliment our past achievements and put New Jersey residents back to work.”