NJ Senate Boss Lays Out Vision For The Future
Last week, Chris Christie laid out his plan for the rest of the year. Now, the man who may run against him for Governor next year has done the same thing.
While Governor Christie says he'll work to end municipal user fees, sick leave payouts, promote shared services, enact ethics reform, and push through a state tax cut, State Senate President Steve Sweeney says he wants greater investment in higher education, an increase in the minimum wage- with a built-in cost of living adjustment, increased shared services, a tax cut if it's feasible, and a greater focus on job creation.
Sweeney says the Governor should have the same goal.
"We gave him a package of jobs bills that he doesn't want to talk about - he needs to start talking to us about what's he going to do for jobs. Our unemployment is 9.8 percent - one of the highest in the nation…I actually introduced a bill that would help small businesses, where if you hired somebody that was on unemployment for a month, that you wouldn't pay the state taxes for them."
He adds, "The governor has to focus on jobs first - as we will - jobs is number one. He has got to wake up and recognize what he's been talking about and what's reality are two different things - starting with the Jersey Comeback. Slogans are great but jobs are better…As a construction guy, I know there was 46 or 47 hundred less construction jobs - just recently announced- less than was before…There's less jobs in New Jersey now than there was in the year 2000, so when the Governor says things are good…he's a likeable person, but the reason he's having a hard time gaining traction is cause my neighbors are still out of work, I still have friends going through foreclosure."
"Poverty is up 11.4 percent since he came into office…We gotta focus on the economy, what he's doing isn't working - now it's time to get down - let's get together…We gave him 30 bills - he didn't like em- so where are your 30 bills? We need to have a package to focus on the economy…I think the governor doesn't like to admit when it doesn't work out for him…We've done some great things together - in a bipartisan fashion. But where there's been an enormous failure on the governor's part is jobs…He's been traveling around the nation campaigning and stumping for Mitt Romney- and that might be great for Chris Christie and Mitt Romney - but the people of New Jersey really need him to come back and focus on the economy."