NJ governor orders partial shutdown of state government

NJ governor orders partial shutdown of state government

NJ governor orders partial shutdown of state government

One family gained from New Jersey's government shutdown on Saturday - Gov. Chris Christie's wife, their kids and their friends had one of the East Coast's most lovely beaches all to themselves.

State Park Police are turning people away from Island Beach State Park on the Saturday of Fourth of July weekend. Road construction projects were required to wind down and motor vehicle offices were closed, although state-run parks, beaches, and historic sites remained open through July 4th. The sticking point is a bill Gov. Christie has staunchly supported to restructure Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, the state's largest health care provider.

Maine's Republican-controlled senate had already endorsed the budget with a 34-1 vote, but LePage vowed to veto any budget that increased the state's lodging tax without reducing the income tax, the Portland Press Herald reported.

Christie said earlier this week that he and his family were planning to be there for the Fourth of July holiday.

Prieto says he will not post for a vote in the Assembly any bill that would restructure Horizon, calling the idea unfair and risky as Congress considers repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act.

Christie told reporters Saturday that the state will do what it must to function, either via federal funding or by running up a tab.

Christie, a former GOP presidential candidate and adviser to President Donald Trump who is leading the White House's anti-opioid commission, announced the shutdown of the state's nonessential services in an executive order.

Chris Christie and the Democratic-led Legislature returned to the Statehouse on Saturday to try to resolve the shutdown, the state's first since 2006 and the first under Christie.

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Christie had initially sought to use the surplus to fund in-patient and out-patient drug-addiction treatment.

Though some signs have popped up around the state blaming the mess on Prieto, it's likely that the wildly unpopular Christie will ultimately take the fall.

He also claims Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto D-Hudson, "unneccessarily stalled the budget process, inconveniencing everyone living in our state".

Governor Chris Christie ordered lawmakers into session Saturday at 11 a.m.to break the impasse.

The emergency orders marked the first state government shutdown in New Jersey since 2006 and the first in ME since 1991.

Campers who stayed in parks Friday night were asked to leave Saturday morning, Christie said.

Horizon opposes the proposed changes. "If they send me a budget without lottery and without Horizon, I will still sign a budget. I would hate to see their reputations damaged ... by not coming to the table now and finding a solution".

"I'm open to doing things after we get the budget done and I'm still holding to that", he said. "We had an opportunity to get together in rooms over those hours and hammer out a compromise, and we didn't".

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